Bighorn Sheep Auction License Brings $40,000

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Oscar Carlson from Anoka, Minnesota paid $40,000 for North Dakota's 2004 bighorn sheep auction license at the March 20 Minnesota-Wisconsin Chapter of the Foundation for North American Wild Sheep annual meeting in Minneapolis. In comparison, last year's license sold for $35,000.

Carlson, a member of the Minnesota-Wisconsin chapter, is a strong supporter of bighorn sheep management efforts in North Dakota, according to Brett Wiedmann, big game biologist for the North Dakota Game and Fish Department, Dickinson. "Oscar has been instrumental in promoting and supporting North Dakota's bighorn sheep management program in recent years," Wiedmann said. "His passion is promoting youth involvement in the outdoors and has personally funded several youth projects throughout North America focusing on habitat enhancement for wild sheep. Many of the young people who have participated in past projects are now adults who have a unique perspective on the critical issues facing wild sheep throughout their historic range."

License sale proceeds, along with an additional grant of $25,000, will be used to enhance management of North Dakota's bighorn sheep. The grant and license auction are part of a 10-year agreement, signed in 1999, between the department and Minnesota-Wisconsin conservation group.

In addition to the license, the chapter auctioned several items, including original artwork, bringing in $3,650, with all proceeds donated to sheep projects in North Dakota.