Who are Game Wardens?

Facts about Oklahoma Game Wardens for young outdoor enthusiasts

Game Wardens are some of the most recognized members of the wildlife conservation team in Oklahoma.

A Game Warden’s primary job is to enforce the fish and wildlife laws of the state. These laws ensure that our state provides an opportunity for all sportsmen to continue to have opportunities to hunt and fish for years to come.

When someone breaks a wildlife law, they are hurting the future of hunting and fishing in our state. Game Wardens do not enjoy arresting violators, but performing this necessary duty is a vital tool in conserving and managing Oklahoma’s wildlife. Every “game hog” or careless violator poses a threat to the resource and enjoyment of others.

Sportsmen and women pay for the right to enjoy their sport in Oklahoma by buying hunting and fishing licenses. Game Wardens are public servants sworn to protect wildlife and the public’s interests in the outdoors.

A Warden’s day is busy and rewarding! In addition to enforcing laws, Game Wardens have many other duties that bring them in daily contact with people.

They start some of their days well before sunrise, helping biologists in their study of wildlife or fisheries problems. From such studies comes the information that will be used to set season dates and bag limits for hunting and fishing seasons in Oklahoma.

Game Wardens may use their vehicle radio or mobile phone to call in a fishing report on a certain lake. Such information is relayed to newspapers, TV and radio stations. This information helps sportsmen decide where to hunt or fish.

Game Wardens occasionally visit with sportsmen’s clubs, schools, scout groups and civic groups. They may speak about new lands and regulations, or about some topic directly related to hunting or fishing. They may also pass along printed information published by the Wildlife Department. This information may cover anything from hunting or fishing laws to building bird houses to improving habitat for quail. Game Wardens also frequently help teach hunter education courses and fishing clinics.

Game Wardens often spend time visiting landowners in their county, encouraging them to allow ethical hunters and anglers on their land to harvest the surplus wildlife. They may assist the landowner with poaching problems, or give them information about getting fish for their pond.

Wardens also check licenses and bag limits of hunters and anglers. In the spring, Game Wardens may also drop by a dove or quail nest site to check its progress. They may investigate areas where illegal deer hunting has been reported. To catch poachers, wardens may have to wait, day or night, for long periods in concealed locations.

Whatever Game Wardens do, they must do well. They are constantly in the eye of the public. They are expected to know all there is to know about hunting, fishing, wildlife laws, wildlife management, camping, woodcraft and other outdoor activities as well as general information about their county.

The first step in becoming a Game Warden in Oklahoma is to take the Department’s Standardized Employment Exam. This exam consists of 100 questions covering the state and federal wildlife laws and regulations, Oklahoma geography, biological and environmental sciences relating to fish and wildlife, environmental education and communications, general journalism, photojournalism, technical writing and editing. 

To take the exam to become a Game Warden, you must be at least 21 years of age and have a Bachelor’s Degree with at least 16 credit hours in wildlife or biology related course work. A Bachelor’s Degree in a wildlife related field is preferred. You are not required to have any previous related experience.

Those who are selected for a Game Warden position are interviewed and submit to psychological and physical exams, a urinalysis to screen for illegal drug use, and a thorough background investigation.

Wardens must be able to meet a physical ability standard, jog/walk over rough terrain, swim, be able to physically control and arrest law violators, operate a boat, and operate 2/4 wheel drive vehicles.

Oklahoma Game Wardens are able to handle almost any problem that comes up during their work day. They are able to render first aid service, assist in lifesaving and water safety, and assist stranded motorists along roadways. They investigate illegal hunting and fishing, and help landowners improve wildlife habitat. They speak to a variety of sportsmen’s groups, and even come to your school to talk about wildlife careers.

Game Wardens can be your best friend in Oklahoma’s outdoors. 

The Department will make all decisions regarding recruitment, hiring, promotions, terminations, and other terms and conditions of employment without discrimination on grounds of age, race, color, creed or religion, sex, national origin, physical or mental disability, or other factors which cannot be lawfully used as the basis for an employment decision.

Human Resource Office
Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation
P O Box 53465
Oklahoma City, OK 73152

In order to recruit, hire and retain a professional workforce, Human Resources provides quality service to employees through compensation, benefits, retirement, policy administration, and education and training opportunities