Hunter Education MONTHLY NEWS

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In This Issue:

Coordinator's Column - TYHP Kicks Off New Year!


I just served as a "Huntmaster" on for the 16th Annual Texas Youth Hunting Program (TYHP) SUPER HUNT, January 4-6th, near Fredericksburg, at the Cave Creek School House.  I've had the pleasure of working at every SUPER Hunt and watched them blossom into a full bouquet because of the passion and dedication of landowners (Cave Creek Wildlife Management Assn.), TYHP Huntmasters (13-17 ranches involved), Hunter Education Instructors, the leadership from Lead Huntmasters and Hunter Ed Instructors like Kent Brenneman, Doug Dubois, Jr. and Linda Campbell (TPWD - retired), a top-notch cooking staff (SCI Austin, Operation Orphans) and other Hunter Education Instructors & TYHP Volunteers. This year's 50+ hunters harvested 61 deer to help the Association meet some of its management goals. THANKS to all who support TYHP which affords access to over 1200 youth and their families each year. Instructor Bryan Jones, San Antonio, TYHP Field Operations Coordinator, reports that as of Jan. 9th, 54 events are currently posted (Jan. - Mar.) and 133 events have been completed this season already. (PHOTO: Wes Hajduk was happy to take his first (axis) deer at this year's Super hunt. Congrats Phil and Wes!). # 6574

Steve Hall, Hunter Education Coordinator


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Dallas & Houston Safari Conventions - Get in FREE


Dallas Safari Club Convention


Jan 19th; 9AM - NOON - RM D168 (located on the lower level),  Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center, 650 South Griffin St., Dallas. Hunter Education Instructor "Ethics & Responsibility" training featuring guest, Michael Sabbeth - The Honorable Hunter & General Update - Participants are responsible for parking fees.  For information, contact:


  • 9:00 - Welcome & Introductions - Steve Hall, Hunter Education Coordinator
  • 9:15 - 10:45 - Michael Sabbeth - "Making the Case for Hunters & Hunting!"
  • 11:00 - 11:45 - Program Updates - TPWD Hunter Education Staff
  • 11:45 - 12:30 - LUNCH (On your own)
  • 12:30 - 1:30 PM - SEMINARS "How Can You Kill those Beautiful Animals! Defending Hunting in our Post-Modern Age" - Michael Sabbeth  RM 223
  • 1:30 - CONVENTION Floor - Dallas Safari Club Booths & Exhibitions
  • 2:00 - 3:00PM Outdoor Adventures: Youth Education in Schools - RM 225

Houston Safari Club Convention 


Jan 26th; 9AM - 11AM - Room 340, Hilton Americas Houston, 1600 Lamar.  Parking at GRB Houston Avenida North, Central or South Garages. Avenida South Garage is connected to the GRB and Hilton by a sky bridge. You can also try to find the closest parking for the cheapest price.

For more information, contact: 

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Harper WMA/Jacob Kreb's Memorial Hunt


A Harper "Youth Hunt for Wounded Warriors" is held each year in memory of former Assistant Hunter Education Instructor, Jacob Krebs, who died in 2013 during an exercise chasing his dream to be a Navy Seal.  Jacob was active in TYHP, the organization leading the charge for youth hunting, especially on private lands. Congratulations Krebs family, TYHP, Harper WMA and the many volunteers, and instructors, that make the annual hunt a HUGE success on behalf of the military families and on behalf of Jacob, who exemplifies honorable and virtuous service to others!

Kreb's Hunt

Hunter Education Instructor, Will Krebs, Fredericksburg, his wife Mary, and their daughter, Julie, hosted their 6th Annual Youth Hunt for Wounded Warriors Jan. 11-13th on behalf of the # 8164 Harper Wildlife Management Association. This year's hunt featured the take of 21 deer and 13 hogs, along with other hunter education activities that are held as part of the popular Central Texas Hunt. Here Will distributes donated prizes at the end of the hunt to all youth hunters earning points along the way.  "It has become a tradition," Krebs smiled, "It helps me make sure they also complete their thank you letters and paperwork before they leave!"

Dr Dittmar

As part of hunter education activities, Dr. Bob Dittmar, TPWD Veternarian, Harper, educates hunters on Chronic Wasting Disease during the Harper hunt.  He assists agencies, organizations and hunters with information and procedures for collecting deer samples in Texas. (Photo Credit: Koy Coffer) # 20853

Krebs Hunt

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2018 Accomplishments -- WAY TO GO!

  • Students Certified - 55,862
  • Hunter Ed Courses - 3,575
  • Hunter Ed New Instructors 351
  • Active Instructors3,110
  • Volunteer Hours29,276
  • In-kind Match - $ 702,624.00 
  • New Online Registration System – New Hunter Education Registration & Data Base Management System implemented, instructors trained, Hunter Education students/instructors registered; Thousands of calls handled for training, course queries, certificate printed/changed
  • Hunting Incidents - 21; HE Students Involved - 5
  • Becoming An Outdoors Woman – 2 major workshops held – 150 Women, 82 Volunteers perworkshop
  • Texas Annual Instructor Conference, Banquet and Awards – Camp Young Judaea, Wimberley – Top Awards Presented  (Hosted by Texas Hunter Education Instructor’s Association) – 67 Instructors
  • Hunter Education Initiative (Texas AgriLife Extension) 211 Master Volunteers trained; 528 trained in hunter education; 1,886 participants reached by trained volunteers
  • TX Youth Hunting Program Partnership (TX Wildlife Assn)1,175 youth hunters; 229 hunts; 383 new Huntmasters
  • Hunting for Conservation (national) – 39 participants - TPWD Employees/Master Naturalists # 23724
  • Hunter Ed Outreach 9,466 participants reached by staff-led hunter education events and activities (e.g. Mentor/Challenge Hunts, Summer Camps; Festivals/Fairs; Career Days; Shows; Retail Shows, etc.)
  • Mobile Shooting Range - 10,379 shooters; + 4,130 participants reached

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PRIZES for Reading Target Talk -- Bringing it Back!

Waterfowl Hunters

Hunter Education Instructor certification numbers are hidden throughout Target Talk! It is our way, beginning again in December 2018 to reward those of you who simply read this newsletter. Since I do not hear from most of you, I would like to know that you are at least paying attention to the monthly happenings. Be on the watch for YOUR HE INSTRUCTOR # tucked away within these articles! Email/call (512-389-8142) to claim your prize TODAY!  Let's try it out ... # 23640  - Steve Hall

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HE Instructors at Youth, Women & Mentor Hunts


"HAVE TRAILER - WILL TRAVEL!"- Hunter Education Instructors (L to R) Richard Powell - Orange, Duke Walton - Porter, Bob Boswell - Georgetown and David Hammonds - Fort Worth, combined their statewide forces to conduct hunter education activities for their 6th year in a row at the "Kreb's Youth Hunt for Wounded Warriors" (see article above). These passionate Area Chiefs/Hunter Education Instructors conduct events statewide on behalf of TPWD, Texas Hunter Education Instructor Association and Texas State Rifle Association -- among other worthy organizations/causes.

Duke (2)

TSRA Wounded Warrior, Mentor & Youth Hunts - This time of year, Bob Boswell and Duke Walton, along with Richard Powell, also host a series of youth/mentor hunts including this one for TSRA where 4 hunters took 5 deer, NRA's Youth Hunter Education Challenge and for Duke's Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation Hunter Education grand prize drawing winner.  Mentored hunts following hunter education is a key Recruitment, Retention and Reactivation (R3) strategy.  

Lake Waco

Outdoor Woman's Hunt - U.S. Army Corps of Engineers at Lake Waco Parkl. Front Row: Monica Bickerstaff - N TX Hunter Ed Specialist, Marcy Cavazos-Colunga, Eileen Lee, Judy Frels Ward, Ivy Strain, Tony Messina  Back Row: Danny Bihl, Travis Glick, Richard Buchfink Jr.  Not Pictured:  TPWD HE Area Chief, Brent Heath and TPWD Game Warden, Matt Kiel

BOW Hunt

Photo:  Judy Frels Ward, Eileen Lee, Marcy Cavazos-Colunga  and Ivy Strain stay warm around the camp fire during the December Becoming an Outdoors Woman (BOW) Mentored Hunt  # 23596

Letter  to Monica Bickerstaff, N TX Hunter Education Specialist and Hunt Coordinator: 

"I am still thinking about the fall 2018 hunt.  What a great experience! THANK-YOU for organizing and orchestrating this hunt. It was an experience I will never forget. 

I grew up in the outdoors. However, as a young girl I wasn’t interested in learning to hunt. I loved to shoot, camp and be outside; but, not hunt. I didn’t have anything against hunting. It just wasn’t on my radar at the time. Fast forward to the present and I am a single mom of a 15 year-old son. I raised my son to appreciate the outdoors, shoot and now hunt (with his uncle). He is also working on his Eagle Scout rank. My son hasn’t harvested a deer since he started hunting two years ago. My brother has had limited time (due to work) to take him ... one or two days each year. We hunt on our own land and so expected Will to harvest a deer. When he didn’t harvest a deer last year - I took matters in my own hands! 

I mention this to paint a picture of how important BOW is to me. As a mom, I want to see my son accomplish his goals. So, to help him be the best hunter he could be and harvest a deer, mom had to get up to speed. I searched for courses and found BOW. I attended BOW for the first time in spring 2018. I loved it and saw this was exactly the education I needed!  I was having a great time learning. I was so excited to tell my son all I had learned!  I then attended BOW fall 2018. One of my classes was deer processing. (Very timely!). I was determined to be prepared and take my son hunting as much as he wanted. I also wanted to learn to hunt and harvest a deer. Thanks to BOW I now have the education and skills.  

The next challenge was going to be when my son or I harvested and processed our first deer together... by ourselves. I felt prepared and knew we could do this. However, experience is the best teacher. (And neither of us had harvested a deer!)  I believe it was a ‘God thing’ that I was drawn for this hunt. I also feel I picked the perfect huntress group -- Ivy, Eileen and Marcy are my hunting sisters! I felt we were the ‘"Four Huntress Amiga's." The hunt gave me the experience and confidence I needed to hunt with my son...

...Monica, I mostly appreciate you.  The time and effort you devoted to ensuring our hunt was a success shown through in every detail. You were everywhere at the same time and organized, too!  It was apparent that you and the other staff were well prepared and excited to be a part of this hunt. Thank-you, thank-you for this experience. I equate this experience to the story, ‘The Long Walk (part of gift)’ as told by Jim Daly via Focus On the Family. Thanks for taking the long walk (time and effort) to bring us this gift (a great hunt)." 

Warmest regards, Judy Frels Ward


THEIA President and HE Instructor, Lindsay Hodgdon, (R) conducted a traditional Hunter Education course for members of  DIVA...Women Outdoor Worldwide in Anna.  DIVAS founder, Judy Rhodes, requires hunter education and firearms instruction for all members prior to hunting.  This group was preparing for a hunt in January.

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HE Instructor Hunting 101s & Outreach Events

Waterfowl 101s

West Texas Hunter Education Specialists, Randy Spradlin, Abilene, and instructor Robert Hibbs, Dumas, conducted a Waterfowl 101 in Cactus after Christmas. Monica Bickerstaff, N TX Specialist (L) also assisted during the hunt.  Bay Area Council Venturing Crew 30.06 and local youth participated in the workshop which included a three (3) day hunt. Special thanks to Everett Timmons, the City of Cactus City Manager for hosting the hunt and Marcel Fishbacher, Moore County Extension Agent for providing lodging for the visiting Crew.  The crew also spent a day with Hog Hunting 101 at Worth Ranch in Palo Pinto and had opportunity to assist Sid Richardson Scout Ranch with the last few MLD permits for the year.


Area Chief, Duke Walton, Porter, presented about Texas wildlife to the Woodlands Chapter of Legacy Outfitters, a men's Christian organization. Duke spends as much time promoting and conducting outreach as he does teaching courses. Keep those events and photos coming, Duke!  # 24167


Target Shooting 101 - Curtis Ansley, Shepherd, joined with DW Deer Farms near Hempstead to host a Target Shooting 101 for students from Booker T. Washington High School in Houston. Using the Mossberg training firearms, he covered firearm safety & handling prior to heading to the range for some small bore .22 cal. rifle and handgun shooting. The two most popular actions were the Ruger .22 magnum revolver and the Henry lever action that I received from incentive points through the hunter education program. Thanks to fellow instructor, Duke Walton, Porter, and Texas State Rifle Association for providing ear & eye protection and the ammunition.

Mr. Malonson was a great host, and he had several game wardens there, also. After a delicious fish fry and fellowship, the kids got to fish in the large pond. It was very cool to see them have such an opportunity. The country setting, including several large antlered deer walking around, was a big change for most of these students. A few had hunted before, but most were strictly city “kids”. It’s always very satisfying when we can introduce someone new to the outdoors and to the shooting sports -- even, more so, when it’s a group.  Thanks to the school for bringing them outdoors!


Area Chiefs, David and Jeanette Hammonds, Fort Worth, made a presentation on hunting legally and safely in Texas at the Fort Worth NAS JRB Safety Stand Down - Continuing Education Session in December for 400 Navy personnel. Captain Townsend, Commander of the NAS JRB, (L) took time to thank and pose with the Hammonds after their session.

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National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day Jan. 9th


Grahame Jones, Colonel Game Warden with Texas Parks and Wildlife Department's Law Enforcement Division, on behalf of the agency and its leadership, took time on January 9th to recognize all local, state and federal Law Enforcement officers and their staffs, including our very own game wardens, for their honorable service to the State of Texas. 

"Our vision statement is as follows: “As Texas Game Wardens, we proudly honor and respect our heritage while embracing the future. We continue to take progressive steps to improve our culture and practices to better serve and protect the natural resources and people of Texas," said Jones.

He added, "Join me in never forgetting the sacrifices made and the struggles fought by retired Game Wardens and other Law Enforcement Officers and most importantly, always remember those Officers who have made the ultimate sacrifice including 19 Texas Game Wardens....God bless you." 

Photo:  Colonel Grahame Jones, TPWD Law Enforcement Division, also took time to swear in Smith School kids who visited the headquarters in December to decorate the tree, sing carols & earn "Honorary Texas Game Warden" badges.

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Hunter Education Staff Contact Information

HE Staff

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L to R:  Heidi SE, Randy W, Morgan C, Brock S, Steve HQ, and Monica N.


SE TX - Heidi Rao, Houston; 713-829-1377c

W TX - Randy Spradlin, Abilene; 512-923-3509 c

C TX - Morgan Harbison, College Station

S TX - Brock Minton, Corpus Christi; 361-825-3249 w; 361-944-3617 c  #21927

N TX - Monica Bickerstaff, Grand Prairie; 469-601-8349 c

TPWD HQ ADMIN (ACP) - 1340 Airport Commerce Dr., Bldg. 6-B, Austin, TX 78741

HE Coord. - Steve Hall,; 512-389-8140; 550-7330c

HE Asst. - Eddie Kleppinger; 512-389-8142





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TPWD & Texas Hunter Education Partner Resources

Hunter Education Overview | Instructor Resources | Student Resources

Operation Game Thief | Texas Game Warden Association

Texas Youth Hunting Program | Texas 4-H Shooting Sports

Other Hunter Ed Resources

International Hunter Education Association | NRA PROGRAMS & Services

NSSF Hunting & Ranges | Texas Hunter Education Instructor Association

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wildlife & sport fish restoration