Caribou Gear Tarp

MT Unlimited

Bluffgruff

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Joined
Jun 23, 2019
Messages
608
Well let's change the topic a bit......I've drew a 46AE desert sheep tag in AZ!!!!!!!! Going to kill my first ram this year!!!!!
How many scouting trips have you made so far? It might be a good option for unlimited sheep in Arizona, if they were to do that.
 

recurveman

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 27, 2018
Messages
198
Location
Gilbert, Arizona
Well the game and fish states that this is the most physically demanding sheep hunt in the state. It isn't even in the same zip code as the UL's but the chances of killing a ram are about 99% better.

I haven't been scouting yet because you need to get permission to enter the area. Might also be a touch warm in AZ to do a bunch of scouting for a sheep hunt that starts in December.
 

[email protected]

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 31, 2018
Messages
276
Location
Olympic Peninsula - for now
They closed it because there was no lamb recruitment for a number of years. One of those Big Sky cougars developed a taste for lamb. The blowing out of the quota that one season made keeping it as an unlimited hunt a poor option when the population recovered. Can happen too in the Beartooths if we are not careful.
I appreciate the information.
 

[email protected]

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 31, 2018
Messages
276
Location
Olympic Peninsula - for now
Well the game and fish states that this is the most physically demanding sheep hunt in the state. It isn't even in the same zip code as the UL's but the chances of killing a ram are about 99% better.

I haven't been scouting yet because you need to get permission to enter the area. Might also be a touch warm in AZ to do a bunch of scouting for a sheep hunt that starts in December.
I like the notion of that December starting date. Have you spoken with any of the biologists there to get a clue on location rutting grounds within the unit? What will other hunter numbers look like there?
 

recurveman

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 27, 2018
Messages
198
Location
Gilbert, Arizona
I like the notion of that December starting date. Have you spoken with any of the biologists there to get a clue on location rutting grounds within the unit? What will other hunter numbers look like there?
Well AZ is a bit different that other states. The sheep typically rut in June/July in AZ. We have trail cam pics of rams coming to water sources and they were all crazy bloody from butting heads. It must have been crazy intense. There was blood all over their heads.
 

Lambchoppa

Member
Joined
Jul 12, 2021
Messages
10
Quick little gear question here. As far as glass I always run 12x50 ELs and I am going to add a nice spotter here soon. What size spotters are a lot of you guys using? I’m looking at picking up a ATX and was curious how many guys would go with the 85? I’m leaning towards a 65 for weight and size.

Thanks
 

Oak

Expert
Joined
Dec 23, 2000
Messages
13,720
Location
Colorado
They closed it because there was no lamb recruitment for a number of years. One of those Big Sky cougars developed a taste for lamb. The blowing out of the quota that one season made keeping it as an unlimited hunt a poor option when the population recovered. Can happen too in the Beartooths if we are not careful.
It’s always fun to blame predators, but if the problem was low lamb recruitment it probably wasn’t a predator issue.
 

EYJONAS!

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 17, 2017
Messages
3,676
Quick little gear question here. As far as glass I always run 12x50 ELs and I am going to add a nice spotter here soon. What size spotters are a lot of you guys using? I’m looking at picking up a ATX and was curious how many guys would go with the 85? I’m leaning towards a 65 for weight and size.

Thanks
I like the 80 plus my self. If your spending that much on glass why get off in Chicago when your going to New York?
 

buffybr

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 3, 2009
Messages
661
Location
BozAngeles, MT
It’s always fun to blame predators, but if the problem was low lamb recruitment it probably wasn’t a predator issue.
Not sheep, but one MT FWP biologist spent a good part of his career studying the mule deer in the Bridger Mountains NE of Bozeman. One of his findings was that in the first 6 months after they were born, 45% of the mule deer fawns were killed by coyotes.

Also, I've known Kurt Alt for many years, and he told me once that lions have been a big threat to the Spanish Peaks sheep for many years.
 
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Oak

Expert
Joined
Dec 23, 2000
Messages
13,720
Location
Colorado
This case it was, and specifically one Lion. Ask Kurt Alt, he was the biologist. Lambs started disappearing in the winter. The lion was removed and the herd recovered.
If a single lion is suppressing a sheep herd, it's not a viable population. It can certainly happen with transplant populations that are low in numbers and naïve to to the new habitat, and NM desert sheep herds are a great case study for such situations. We helped to remove offending lions to let those populations grow in NM, but once they were larger and established, they could handle the predation. The point is that the single lion that was removed was an indicator that the herd had other problems. The Spanish Peaks herd was probably suffering from what ails many wild sheep herd around the west. They are small, isolated populations that are more impacted by stochastic events such as as a bad winter, a pathogen spillover, or a single lion that acquires a taste for mutton.
 

BigHornRam

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 15, 2004
Messages
9,184
Location
"Land of Giant Rams"
It's a native herd but winter range is limited. The Hilgard herd had an all herd die off around the same time ( little before) and not sure if they ever concluded why. This was an unusual sitution for sure. Most of Western Montana's transplant sheep herds are so darn tame, it's a wonder there isn't more depredation IMO. No science to back it up, but good thing wolves are not fond of mutton around here.😉
 

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