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Trapper Education course offerings

Mandatory in Massachusetts to apply for a Massachusetts Trap Registration Number

Completion of a Trapper Education course is mandatory in Massachusetts for Problem Animal Control (PAC) agents and first-time trappers who wish to apply for a trap registration number.

Upon successful completion of the Massachusetts Trapper Education course, graduates are mailed a certificate of completion. This certificate never expires. 

All courses are FREE of charge and open to the public.

Trapper education schedule

There are NO Trapper Education courses scheduled at this time.

To be notified when Trapper Education courses are available in Massachusetts please sign up for course notifications.

About this course

When & where: The MassWildlife Hunter Education Program offers the Trapper Education Course 3 to 4 times each year in different parts of the state. These courses typically take place in the early spring and fall. Students should be prepared to travel to another part of the state to take this course. 

Format: The Trapper Education course in Massachusetts is currently offered as a 2-session independent study course which means students will need to attend 2 scheduled class sessions (typically 1 evening and 1 day of a weekend) and complete a home assignment on their own time. There is no 1-day course and no online-only course offered in Massachusetts.

Step-by-Step Guide for Enrolled Students:

  1. Attend the first class session: During the first session of a course, students obtain instruction on course requirements and receive study materials including the student manual. The students will also be taught lessons on trapping laws and furbearer management.
    • Unaccompanied minors (students under 18 who are attending a course without a parent or legal guardian) must bring a signed permission form.
  2. Complete the Required Homework: All students will need to either complete the Trapper Education Workbook or complete the online North American Basic Trapper Course at conservationlearning.org to meet the homework requirement. To participate in the second session of your course (the field day) you MUST come with proof you completed the required homework.
    • If you have trouble accessing the online homework or have misplaced your workbook, contact the MassWildlife Hunter Education Program ASAP at (508) 389-7820.
    • Do not wait until the last minute to do your homework!  The homework takes most students 3-6 hours to complete.
  3. Turn in your homework and Participate in the field day: Students start their field day by turning in their completed homework. Students who do not arrive with proof of completing their homework are not permitted to participate in the field day or take the exam. Students will then participate in a number of hands-on activities. Class participation and performance is a factor in determining successful completion of the course. Students are expected to demonstrate safe handling of equipment and a mature and responsible attitude toward wildlife and people. 
  4. Take the final exam: During the field day, students will take a final written exam. Students must pass the exam with a score of 80% or better. Students who need to take the exam verbally can request such by speaking with an instructor. 
  5. Your certificate will be mailed to you: Once all of the paperwork has been returned to the MassWildlife Hunter Education Program office and processed, your Trapper Education certificate will be mailed to the postal address you provided on your registration form. You can use the Trapper Education certificate you receive to then apply for a MA Trap Registration Number

What should students bring to the field day?

  • Your completed homework.
  • Plenty to drink or a reusable bottle.
  • A bagged lunch (for longer sessions - not all facilities are located near food options).
  • The course may include outdoor activities - please dress accordingly.

In the case of inclement weather, students will be notified of any changes or cancellations.

    Additional Resources for About this course

    Do you need to take Trapper Education ASAP?

    A government-issued Trapper Education certificate from any U.S. State can be used to apply for a Massachusetts Trap Registration number. To search for courses offered outside of Massachusetts, click here

    Additional Resources for Do you need to take Trapper Education ASAP?

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