Wild sheep News
Remote Sensing Camera equipment sends photos to WY-WSF website
The Rawlins BLM staff had the opportunity to finally mount and install a camera trap on the recently constructed Ferris Mountain - Miners Creek wildlife guzzler on Friday (9/9/17). This camera trap is set up to forward any triggered pictures to an email address (the camera only allows for pictures to be sent to two email addresses) via a Verizon cell phone data plan; so we do not have to frequently re-visit the project site to recover photo data. We have another camera trap to install on the Sand Creek guzzler site, but I'm not sure when that installation will occur. We plan to operate the cameras from spring through fall and remove the cameras and their hardware in the fall (November) of each year.
The camera set ups purchased are produced by Reconyx and and each kit cost around $1,650.00. Each kit contains a Camera (PC-900C), solar power unit, security box, and a high gain directional antenna. We custom fabricated a mounting pole for all the hardware and also installed a small cattle panel exclosure around the camera mount.
When we arrived at the Miners Creek guzzler location we documented both mule deer and bighorn sheep near the guzzler location and the guzzler tank showed signs of utilization by elk and mule deer; the tank was half full of water (400 gallons).
Over the course of the first weekend the camera trap captured pictures of both elk and mule deer utilizing the guzzler. I just wanted to share with folks these first few photos documenting the positive impacts these projects are already having on wildlife in the Ferris Mountain area. I placed a small sign on the camera trap documenting the purpose of the wildlife guzzler and thanking all our project funding supporters which included - Wyoming Wild Sheep Foundation, Bow Hunters Of Wyoming, Water For Wildlife, Rocky Mountain Elks Foundation, Wyoming Governs Big Game License Coalition - Wyoming Wildlife Foundation, and the Wyoming Wildlife and Natural Resource Trust.
Thank you again for all your support, and I'll continue to share photos from the camera trap. I'm looking forward to our first bighorn sheep photos utilizing this development!
Mike Murry, Rawlins BLM
Photos will be placed on our website in the near future for our readers to enjoy.
Convention 2017, One for the Record Books
Our 2017 annual convention and fund raiser at the Ramkota in Casper was remarkably fun and successful. We can’t thank you enough for you energy and support for “putting and keeping KIDS and SHEEP on the mountain”. Friday Night Social - More folks attended the social than ever before. Live background music by Sara Domek (Natl. BHS Center) and Erica Flom (Water for Wildlife) provided an enjoyable atmosphere for socialization. Sorry we ran a little short on food. We will order more for next year! A revolving slide show of sheep, members and their youth “on the mountain” also received praise. Keep those photos coming! Complimentary Life Member Breakfast - A record 118 folks showed up to our 16th LM breakfast. Your passion for wild sheep is evident when 519 of our 750 members are Life Members! Simply amazing. One of highlights was LMs contributing $3,800 to the WY-WSF Conservation Fund, which is being used to fund wild sheep projects into the future. Membership Meeting - Attendance to the membership meeting was also excellent. Membership was brought up to speed on numerous topics and approved funding for 11 Grant in Aid projects totaling $97,200. In addition, leadership changed hands with Kurt Eisenach being approved as the new President and Zach McDermott as the new Vice- President. New Board members are Adam Johnson, John Harris and Warren Youmans. Ladies Sip and Paint - This activity was hit with 37 gals producing their own paintings while sipping on whine. They did have an instructor to help keep the wild bunch in order and provide basic painting tips. It was a good thing that the floor was covered with plastic! Youth Activities - We believe in putting and keeping kids on the mountain as well as sheep. So we incorporated youth activities by recruiting Sara Domek, Karen Sullivan and crew from the Dubois Sheep Center along with Dr. Ryan Brock from WSF. They engaged a “herd” of youth in BH sheep ecology, archery and other activities throughout the afternoon. Seminars - A full suite of seminar topics including transplants, habitat enhancements, sheep hunting, national Wild Sheep Foundation update and statewide BH sheep updates were presented. WGFD Director Scott Talbot also provided a general Department update. Approximately 125 folks attended and asked questions. Banquet - There were numerous highlights during the Banquet! • Ron Ball Award - our most prestigious award - presented to a most deserving Freddie Goetz • Youth - approximately 50 youth were front-and-center for awards including 2 life memberships donated by the Conservation Fund, 2 custom log chairs, a youth cow elk hunt along with several other prizes and awards. Kids are the future! • Attendees were asked to donate to the Conservation Fund. They generously donated $13,700!! • Wounded Marine Veterans Kirstie Ennis and Brian Meyer made short presentations and provided a short and inspiring video of Kirstie’s life and determination to excel. WY-WSF and Hunting With Heroes will be sponsoring Kirstie on a Wyoming sheep hunt in 2018, thanks to a donation sheep tag from Keith Neustel (LM#98) and outfitting services by Trails West and Grizzly Outfitters. • Kirstie Ennis announced the recipient of the 2017 wounded veteran BH sheep donated tag, Sara Harris, of Casper. Gap Pucci, of Jackson, donated his BH sheep tag for hunt area 7. • Life Member Mtn Goat Hunt - Pat Pace of Cheyenne will be going to BC and pursue a mtn goat with Wicked River Outfitters, who full donated the hunt for our LM incentive. Auction -Many fine items were gifted and underwritten for our live and silent auctions and folks were quite willing and generous in sporting Wyoming’s wild sheep. Some highlights include: • Two Wy WGFD Commissioner licenses bringing $13,000 to $14,000 each. • The Wy Governor’s BH sheep tag brought $95,000!!! In summary, you have expressed your passion and generosity by generating a net of approximately $180,000 to put and keep KIDS and SHEEP on Wyoming’s mountains. WE THANK YOU!!2017 Raffle Winners 2017 Convention Photos Watch Kirstie Ennis Video
LM#6, Freddie Goetz, is the 2017 Ron Ball Award Winner
After a lifetime of dedication to the Wyoming Wild Sheep Foundation, Freddie Goetz was inducted into the Ron Ball Award winners circle during the 2017 Annual banquet/convention in Casper. Fittingly it was Ron Ball Award winner #1, Kevin Hurley, who did the honors. Freddie was praised for attending all but one of the 34 conventions that the chapter has held. Freddie has always been available for guzzler and habitat projects and has a world class library of video and still photos documenting Wyoming's Wild Sheep population.Read Freddie's Thank You Letter
Jackson Hole Style Easter Egg Hunt
Every Spring the Jackson Boy Scouts of America participate in the best “Easter Egg Hunt” ever. They assist the National Elk Refuge personnel in gather the previous winter’s elk antlers. Well, this year they located a bonus prize, a ram skull. Jackson WGFD biologist, Aly Courtemanch, commented that it’s one of the larger heads recorded for the Jackson BH sheep herd. It will be auctioned during the annual elk antler auction in Jackson on May 20, 2017.
Teton Mountain Goats are on the rise as Mountain Sheep decline
Teton Range populations are heading in opposite directions, which worries wildlife managers.Read the entire story
Two Idaho Wild Sheep euthanized after contact with domestic sheep
Two bighorn sheep rams that were in immediate proximity to domestic sheep near Challis were euthanized Thursday, March 30, to prevent the sheep from potentially carrying disease back to the wild herd.Read the entire story
Wild Sheep utilize Iron Mtn burns
Attached please find a map showing the ewe (6) movements since being captured / collared on March 5 at Iron Mountain, southwest of Chugwater (Area 19), as part of our statewide disease surveillance efforts. The western most area is the Limestone Rim that was burned in 2010 / 2016, the middle portion is "middle canyon", burned in 2015. We have not conducted treatments on the far eastern edge of the map, but obviously it is another steep hogback ridge that qualifies as escape terrain and suitable for bighorn use. The sheep are utilizing the burns we completed with WY WSF's financial assistance.......Thank You!Larger Map