Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) has submitted its ten-year management plan for the Arkansas River Data Analysis Unit (DAU) Rocky Mountain Sheep.  The purpose of the plan is to set population and harvest objectives for the DAU. Likewise, the DAU consists of units S-7, S-47, S-49, and S-79. This ten-year plan will guide this DAU from 2022 to 2032. These units center around the area of Salida and Canon City Colorado.

So, the highlights from the Arkansas River draft plan for the DAU are as follows:

  • Manage as a Tier-2 core population. Which is defined as more than 75 animals for more than 80% since 1986 and more than one interconnected herd.
  • Population target 375 sheep with a range between 350 – 400.
  • The annual harvest for the DAU to remain sustainable is 7 – 18 rams with no ewe hunting.
  • Maintain current harvest average ram age of 4 – 6 years. Subsequently, this allows the herd to grow healthy rams and provides hunters with trophy class animals.

Additionally, the CPW is accepting public comments on the plan through July 3rd, 2022. Comments can be emailed to The draft review can be found here. Bighorn sheep conservation and hunting have remained a focus for the CPW and they hope that putting this plan out to the public will give them much-needed feedback. You can read more about this draft plan by clicking the link above or you can be taken to the CPW page about it by clicking here. Additionally, you can read more Colorado-related hunting news by clicking here. Thanks for reading!

So, what are your thoughts on this draft plan for the Arkansas River bighorn herd? Have you ever hunted bighorn sheep in Colorado? Let us know in the comments!

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