Schools at all levels have shifted courses online, so it shouldn’t be a big surprise that the Iowa Department of Natural Resources is now offering a virtual workshop to teach how to hunt, field dress, and cook waterfowl.

Jamie Cook, a program coordinator for the DNR, says the course will target Iowans who have little to no waterfowl hunting experience — and they’ll make it work during the pandemic. “We will take every measure to make camera angles really, really good and high index,” Cook says. “I field dressed a dove last night on my computer screen and had it to where it looked really good and did everything to accommodate as much as we could.”

While these types of skills usually require hands-on training, Cook says they’re making the switch to using Zoom webinars with a panel of expert instructors for the two-part workshop series next month. “Immediately following, probably within a week of the courses, we’re going to send them an email that’s going to have detailed information, it’s going to have recipes, it’s going to have a link to a PDF of the hunting regulations,” Cook says. “We’ll also send some video clips along to them that we’ve used over the years for these courses.”

Ideally, Cook says they’ll invite the participants on a hunt during the upcoming season with experienced hunters from Delta Waterfowl. People who take part in the free workshops will learn basic strategies for hunting waterfowl, things like proper equipment, where to hunt, safe shooting practices, decoys and calling, and how to field dress, clean, and cook waterfowl. Cook says participants will have plenty of chances to ask questions.

“Last night, with our Learn to Hunt Dove course, we had about 30 questions that came in. We were able to answer those both live and privately through the question-and-answer feature,” Cook says. “We have a lot of positive feedback from the participants.” Course One will be held on September 3rd and will cover waterfowl habitat and identification, hunting regulations, and calling techniques.

Course Two will be held on September 10th and will cover hunting equipment, decoy spreads, cleaning, and cooking. Participants can sign up for either or both courses.
Course 1 –
Course 2 –