Evaluation of fall burning on bighorn sheep winter range

  • Published source details Peek J.M., Riggs R.A. & Lauer J.L. (1979) Evaluation of fall burning on bighorn sheep winter range. Journal of Range Management, 32, 430-432.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Use prescribed burning

Action Link
Terrestrial Mammal Conservation
  1. Use prescribed burning

    A site comparison in 1975–1978 of shrubland and grassland at a site in Idaho, USA (Peek et al. 1979) found that bighorn sheep Ovis canadensis consumed bluebunch wheatgrass Agropyron spicatum growing in burned areas more than they consumed on unburned areas. In the first summer after burning, a higher proportion of bluebunch wheatgrass stems was grazed on burned areas (73%) than on unburned areas (8%). The same pattern was observed, though with reducing magnitude, two years after burning (66 vs 25%), three years after burning (30 vs 10%) and four years after burning (36 vs 22%). Within an 86-km2 study area, seven areas (0.05–0.45 ha, total area 1.51 ha) had controlled burns carried out in September 1974. One hundred randomly selected bluebunch wheatgrass stems from burned and unburned areas were inspected each year to calculate the proportion that was grazed.

    (Summarised by: Nick Littlewood)

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