Some troubling news in the sheep hunting community. At least 12 illegal rams have been seized by the Conservation Officer Service this year. These rams did not meet the legal requirements and yet hunters still pulled the trigger. Thinhorn rams must reach either eight years of age or full curl in order to be legal for harvesting in BC. In an average year, 3 to 5 rams typically fail inspection as legal rams.
So why are we making mistakes? I’m joined by Adam Janke of the Journal of Mountain Hunting and Kyle Stelter of the Wild Sheep Society of British Columbia to look at the reasons that could be fueling this problem.
We talk about the growing interest in sheep hunting, and how tools and technology are making sheep hunting more accessible. Being exposed to an abundance of information gives a false impression of knowledge accumulation, however, this does not and cannot replace experience and true skill building in the field – sheep hunters will relate to our discussion about the challenges of ageing sheep in the field.
Is sheep hunting attracting more inexperienced hunters? Are the motivations changing for this type of hunt? Why are we making the wrong call on these sheep? And most importantly, what are the implications to sheep conservation and our privilege to continue hunting sheep in BC?
Lots to be discussed here. This is a challenging conversation, but one we need to have in the hunting community. I hope you enjoy it.
Photo credit: Fort Nelson Conservation Officer Service
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