Master Hunter Program application period open, in-person orientation in Ridgefield


The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) is inviting new applicants to join the ranks of more than 1,200 certified master hunters across the state. WDFW administers the Master Hunter Permit Program to enlist skilled volunteers who are willing to aid department efforts to support the public and Washington wildlife, according to a WDFW press release. The program is designed to promote safe, lawful and ethical hunting and strengthen Washington’s hunting heritage and conservation ethic.

“To qualify for the program, applicants must demonstrate a high skill level and be committed to lawful and ethical hunting practices,” said David Whipple, WDFW hunter education division manager, in the press release.

Interested individuals can submit applications now through Aug. 15 and must complete all program requirements by May 15, 2024. For information on master hunter eligibility requirements and how to apply, visit WDFW’s website.

Whipple encourages individuals who enroll in the program to prepare thoroughly for the written test. “Master hunters are expected to be knowledgeable on many aspects of WDFW and the agency mission, so the test is fairly comprehensive, and applicants only get one chance to re-take the exam,” he said in the press release.

WDFW has an upcoming in-person orientation scheduled so applicants, current master hunters and the public can receive information on the program and ask questions. It will take place from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Aug. 10 at WDFW’s Southwest Region office in Ridgefield, 5525 S. 11th St.

Master hunters in Washington provide approximately 15,000 hours each year on volunteer projects involving landowner relations and access to private lands, conservation projects for game and diversity species hunter education, according to the press release. WDFW also enlists master hunters to assist the Department in certain human-wildlife conflicts.

WDFW works to preserve, protect and perpetuate fish, wildlife and ecosystems while providing sustainable fish and wildlife recreational and commercial opportunities.