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Bighorn Sheepwatch — 16

It’s been a while since I’ve posted on the Desert Bighorn Sheep that were reintroduced into the Santa Catalina Mountains in Tucson, Arizona. The most recent report indicates that no mortalities occurred from June 9-22, 2014. As you might recall, the original release included 31 sheep: 21 adult females (ewes), three yearling/juvenile ewes, five adult males (rams) and two yearling/juvenile rams. Thirty of the released sheep were wearing satellite GPS collars.

Known bighorn deaths include 14 sheep killed by mountain lions, one additional sheep died as the result of predation by an unknown animal and one died as a result of stress-related myopathy. Three mountain lions have also been killed by Arizona Game and Fish in order to prevent further bighorn losses.

Thirteen of the fourteen remaining collared sheep are believed to be alive. The collar of the fourteenth sheep might be malfunctioning.

Five lambs were reportedly born in the spring of 2-14, and are believed to be doing well.

Controversy still surrounds the project, but there may be some room for hope.

Catalina Bighorn Sheep Reintroduction Project: report:http://www.azgfd.gov/w_c/documents/Cat_BHS_Update_06272014_Final.pdf

For additional information see: http://www.azgfd.gov/w_c/bighornSheep.shtml

 

 

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