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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Ecotypic variation in recruitment of reintroduced bighorn sheep: Implications for translocation

Published source details

Wiedmann B.P. & Sargeant G.A. (2014) Ecotypic variation in recruitment of reintroduced bighorn sheep: Implications for translocation. The Journal of Wildlife Management, 78, 394-401

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Translocate animals from source populations subject to similar climatic conditions Terrestrial Mammal Conservation

A study in 2006–2011 of scrubland across a large area in North Dakota, USA (Wiedmann & Sargeant 2014) found that bighorn sheep Ovis canadensis translocated from populations subject to a similar climate to the recipient site reared more offspring, compared to those translocated from areas with a milder climate. Sheep from an area with a climate similar to the recipient site had a higher average annual recruitment (0.6 juveniles/adult female) than did sheep originating from a milder climate area (0.2 juveniles/adult female). Thirty-nine bighorn sheep originating from Montana, where climate was similar to the recipient site, were release in North Dakota in 2006–2007. Their annual recruitment was compared with that of sheep released between 1956 and 2004, which originated from stock from British Columbia, Canada. Recruitment was assessed by direct observations of radio-tracked sheep, annually, in late summer and the following March of 2006–2011.

(Summarised by Nick Littlewood)