New Mexico Looking to Delist Desert Bighorn Sheep

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The New Mexico Department of Game and Fish (Department) will be conducting public hearings regarding the recommendation to delist desert bighorn sheep (Ovis canadensis mexicana) from the New Mexico threatened and endangered species list, pursuant to the Wildlife Conservation Act, Sections 17-2-37 through 17-2-46, NMSA 1978. The meetings are scheduled as followed:

  • Tuesday September 6, 2011 at 6:00 p.m. in Truth or Consequences, NM in the Civic< Center Chambers located at 400 W 4th St.
  • Tuesday September 6, 2011 at 6:00 p.m. in Deming, NM in the Special Events Center located at 2300 E. Pine St.

Desert bighorn sheep were listed as a state endangered species in 1980 when their population was estimated at less than 70 animals. Through management efforts, the fall 2010 population estimate is approximately 565, with 3 populations or metapopulations with more than 100 animals. This exceeds the delisting criteria as defined in the Recovery Plan. The purpose of the delisting investigation is to evaluate if the bighorn population has met the recovery criteria. As specified in the WCA, a Delisting Investigation Report was developed to evaluate desert bighorn’s biological status in relation to the delisting criteria established in the Recovery Plan. Both of these documents, as well as other information, are available on the Department’s website at A public repository was subsequently established for comments and to document the investigation process, and may be viewed upon request. Following public hearings in southern New Mexico, the State Game Commission shall make the final decision on delisting the species. All views, data, and comments pertaining to the final Delisting Investigation Report may be presented orally or in >writing to the hearing. Written comments and testimony to be included in the hearing record must be filed with the Department’s Director no later than August 7, 2011. Notice of intent to present technical and scientific testimony and a written copy of the testimony to be presented shall be submitted to the State Game Commission no later than August 7, 2011. The public record shall remain open for comments for 30 days after the date of the final hearing, and will close on October 6, 2011.


niceshot_smitty's picture

I hope it gets better.  

I hope it gets better.   Right now they have one tag through the draw and it goes to a out of state hunter every year.  I have been putting in for this hunt for 8 years now and every year.  sorry try again next year.  And yes all 8 years a out of state hunt has got the tag.  The 2nd tag is through the Rocky Mountian bighorn sheep Found.  Yep out of state hunter.  they need to do something, maybe like Colorado does.  you got your in state tags and your out of state tags.  I know it is the most sought after tag in North America but, give the little guy a chance too!!!

hunter25's picture

This looks like a great and

This looks like a great and successful recovery effort by the state of New Mexico. They do not have a lot of tags available for most of the animals down there so it's good to see these guys get added back to the list. I've just got a coiple of more weeks to find out if I drew my antelope tag for this state and if so it will be my first time hunting there. I tried for the oryx but no go on that one.

Once again good job on your good management program.