Pilot Program Encourages New Hunter Mentorship in Panhandle Wildlife District


LUBBOCK, Texas (PRESS RELEASE) — In an effort to promote the mentorship of new hunters in Texas, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s (TPWD) Panhandle Wildlife District has announced the “Mentor a New Hunter” pilot program in the region. Participants have an opportunity to gain invaluable field experience, be recognized by TPWD, along with the chance to win prizes from Cabela’s, First Lite Hunting Apparel and more.

As part of the program, experienced hunters are encouraged to mentor and work with a mentee who has less experience in the field. Eligible mentees should have either never hunted before or have only hunted during the 2019-20 season. Both participants must be at least 18 years old, hold a valid 2020-21 hunting license and must have passed an approved hunter education course.  If hunting on Texas Public Hunting Land, an Annual Public Hunting Permit is also required. The mentor and mentee are to work together on at least three separate occasions, one of which must be an actual hunt.

Other eligible occasions include:

  • Helping mentee purchase appropriate gear for hunting.
  • Shooting skills practice with a hunting firearm or bow and arrow.  
  • Helping mentee apply for drawn hunts and/or finding public hunting areas.
  • Teaching the mentee scouting and other hunting tactics.
  • Processing wild game.
  • Cooking wild game.

Mentors and mentees are encouraged to take pictures of their time in the field and then submit a .JPG image and a brief submission form with 200 words or less detailing the mentorship experience. Submissions will be accepted at newhunter.mentorship@tpwd.texas.gov. Please limit one mentee per mentor.

The “Mentor a New Hunter” pilot project will accept submissions from outside the TPWD Panhandle Wildlife District but greater consideration will be given to those inside the 56 county area.

The deadline for submissions will be Feb. 28, 2021. TPWD staff will then evaluate submissions based on the level of mentorship given to mentees, such as how many hunting trips were taken and how many species were hunted. All winners will be notified by March 31, 2021. The winning submissions will be shared on the TPWD Panhandle District’s Facebook page.

The grand prize winner will receive a Ruger American Predator in 6.5 Creedmoor rifle. Other prizes include a $250 taxidermy gift certificate, a $150 GameGuard gift card, a $100 First Lite gift card, a $50 Cabela’s gift card, a BINO DOCK system and other assorted hunting gear.

Mentees who harvest their first big game animal are encouraged to enter their harvest in Texas Big Game Awards for further recognition.

Hunters can find season dates, regulations, means and methods and more in the all-digital Outdoor Annual. Hunters can access digital copies of the Outdoor Annual, and copies of their licenses, via the Outdoor Annual app.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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