The Hunter Education classes for 2012 are starting up.

The Montana Department of Fish Wildlife and Parks have a number of these classes each year to prepare first-time hunters for the experience.

The first Hamilton class will take registrations until Feb 12. An orientation night will Monday Feb 13 at 7pm at the Hamilton Assembly of God Church at 601 West Main in Hamilton.

The students can register on-line at the FWP website. Follow the links to Education and Hunter Education.

Kids must be at least 11 years old to be certified, and they must attend the Feb 13 orientation with their parent or guardian. The classes will run from Feb 27 to March 12 and will finish in time for those who plan to apply for deer and elk permits by the new March 15 application deadline.

All hunter education classes are free of charge. Montana law requires that anyone born after Jan 1, 1985 must have completed the Hunter Education Course to buy a Montana hunting license.

Classes are planned this spring in Florence, Corvallis and Lone Rock.