Hunting Regulations for Youth

Licence Requirements

You want to be out there chasing big game, not sweating the rules and regulations – but you’ve still got to get your licences sorted out before you head out into the field. The following are the basic licensing requirements for youth hunters in Alberta.

General Requirements - Youth Hunters
Minimum Age: A youth must be at least 12 years old (10 years of age for game bird) to hunt under the authority of any hunting licence in Alberta.
Under 16: All hunters under the age of 16 must have written permission from a parent or guardian to purchase hunting licences.
11 Years Old: Hunters who are 11 years old may apply in the draws for licences if have completed the Alberta Conservation and Hunter Education course but they must be 12 years old anytime before or during the open season for that draw. You may not hunt until you are 12 years old.
Under 18: To hunt with a firearm, hunters under 18 years of age must be accompanied by a parent, a legal guardian or a person 18 years of age or older who has the written permission of the parent or legal guardian.

Get it right! There are many regulations you need to be aware of as a hunter. Always refer to the most recent edition of the Alberta Guide to Hunting Regulations for full details on hunting regulations in the province.

Resident Youth Hunting Licences

  • Subject to the hunter eligibility criteria, a resident 10 to 17 years of age may purchase a Resident Youth Wildlife Certificate that includes a Game Bird Licence.

  • The holder of a valid Resident Youth Wildlife Certificate may purchase a Youth White-tailed Deer Licence and a Youth Mule Deer Licence. This person may also purchase an Antlerless Mule Deer Special Licence available through a draw.

  • Partner Licences are also available to resident youths if designated by the holder of any special licence.

  • All person under 16 years of age must have the written permission of their parent or guardian to purchase a recreational hunting licence.

Youth Migratory Game Bird Hunting Permit

  • Free of charge to youth (under the age of 18 on day the permit is issued).
  • Only available online through MGBH e-Permitting system.
  • Individuals hunting under authority of Youth MGBH permit must be accompanied by an adult hunter/mentor.
  • Mentor must hold valid MGBH permit and had held one in a previous year.
  • Mentor may accompany up to 2 youth hunters at a time, and may also hunt while out with youth permit holder(s).

Federal Firearms Legislation

The Firearms Act requires that individuals wishing to acquire non-restricted firearms must take the Canadian Firearms Safety Course (CFSC) and pass the test.

Topics covered in the Canadian Firearms Safety Course include:

  • The evolution of firearms, major parts, types and actions
  • Basic firearms safety practices
  • Ammunition
  • Operating firearm actions
  • Safe handling and carry procedures
  • Firing techniques and procedures
  • Care of non-restricted firearms
  • Responsibilities of the firearms owner/user
  • Safe storage, display, transportation and handling of non-restricted firearms

More about the CFSC

Learn more about the Canadian Firearms Safety Course, including course locations:

Game Identification

Being able to correctly identify game species is essential to following hunting regulations. You can find game identification information at:

Alberta Guide to Hunting Regulations Look for “Big Game Identification” in the table of contents.

Respect the Land

Everyone has a stewardship role when it comes to Alberta’s public lands. That’s the basic idea behind the Respect the Land program. Visit the Respect the Land page on Facebook — find out what it respecting the land is all about and enter the community dialogue.

Updated: Dec 8, 2023