Ten Mile Creek Ranch
Received an Idaho Fish and Game Commissioners matching grant for $10,000 toward developing a Conservation easement for the property. Portions of this property are very important to the Hells Canyon bighorn sheep population. We are working with the Idaho Fish and Game Department and Western Rivers Conservancy on this project.
Hells Canyon Bighorn Sheep Restoration Committee
A. IDWSF is an active member of this interagency committee. The goal of this committee is to restore bighorn sheep to their historic range throughout Hells Canyon.
B. We have assisted with sheep captures by contributing money for the capture effort, plus provided volunteers: $10,000
C. Assisted with developing and installing bighorn informational signage at key visitor locations on Hells Canyon.
D. Contribute $15,000 per year for a two year public outreach program through the Asotin County Conservation District. This program is designed to work with small domestic sheep flock owners, educating them about the disease issue between domestic sheep and goats and bighorn sheep.
E. Contribute monies to the on-going disease research at Washington State University and South Dakota State University. Specifically, this research involves the mechanism(s) of Movi transmission, plus managing Movi in remnant bighorn populations that contain latent Movi carriers. Dr. Sri: 2008-2014: $18,000; Dr. Besser: $5,000; WSU Diagnostic Lab: $5,000
F. Redbird Land Purchase, 2008-2013: $39,500
Working with Sisters River Ranches Company, landowner, Western Rivers Conservancy and the Idaho Department of Fish and Game to convert the two parcels of the ranch to public ownership.
Idaho Department of Fish and Game
Several from our chapter volunteered for field work involving a lamb survival study in the Owyhee’s. Big Creek ground surveys, 2007, 2009 and 2015: $4,360.35
Challis Highway Bighorn Viewing Station: $35,143.34
Guzzler Project: 2007 and 2014: $24,802.09
Washington DC Fly-In: Zach and Bruce
Domestic Sheep Allotment Issues: 2007-2019: $157,750
A. Hells Canyon, 1990s, Big Canyon Creek, Sheep Creek and Granite Creek allotments closed. The 2010 Payette Forest decision, based on risk of contact, closed 15 allotments: Currin Hill, Surdam, Boulder Creek, Shorts Bar, Grassy Mountain, Vance Creek, Hershey-Lava, Little French Creek, French Creek, Josephine, Bear Pete, Marshall Mountain, Victor-Loon, NF Lick Creek, and Lake Fork. In addition, three allotments were partially closed: Smith Mountain, Price Valley, and Twenty Mile.
B. Lost River Range: 2002: Sulphur Creek Ranch converted the following allotments. Dry Creek (USFS), Long Lost Creek (USFS), Rock Springs (USFS), Grouse Creek (BLM), Dry Creek (BLM), and Pines-Elkhorn (BLM), WSF assisted financially; 2014: Mays Land and Livestock converted Howe Peak (BLM), Howe (USFS), Deadman (BLM), NWF, IDWSF and others provided funding.
C. Lemhi Range: Whittier Ranch converted it’s Bear Creek Allotment (BLM). 2016. NWF and Idaho WSF; Leon Ziegler converted Donkey Hills domestic sheep allotment (BLM) 2000. Idaho FNAWS Financially assisted; Cronks Canyon allotment (BLM). We worked with a new purchaser of the base property who then retired the allotment; USSES, Bernice Allotment (BLM). Cancelled MOU with USSES after domestics discovered to have been repeatedly left on the allotment for years. GPS radio collars proved domestic sheep and bighorns occupying the same range throughout the year; Whittaker Ranch, Two allotments converted to cattle after wild sheep concerns raised. 2013
D. Beaverhead Range : Hanson Livestock Company, Indian Creek Allotment (USFS), Bear Creek Allotment (USFS), Hanson Creek (BLM), Hanson East Side (BLM) and Medicine Lodge Allotment (BLM). NWF and WSF groups financially assisted. 2013; USSES Snakey and Kelly Canyon allotments (USFS) not currently being grazed waiting final decision of future of the USSES; John and Teresa Allen, Middle Creek (USFS) Limestone-Irving (USFS), Hot Springs (BLM) Weber Creek (BLM), Three Springs (BLM), Middle Creek (BLM), Bench Creek (BLM) allotments converted.. Assisted financially by NWF, Idaho WSF and other groups; 2015
E. Boulder/White Clouds: Dennis Kowitz, Fisher Creek (USFS), Cape Horn (USFS) NWF, Idaho WSF and others. 2017-2018; Pass Creek (USFS), closed in the late 1990’s after IDWSF voiced concerns about wild sheep.
F. Committed $25,000 per year for three years to convert the Ball Brothers allotments from sheep to cattle.
G. Submitted letter to the Salmon-Challis Forest opposing re-opening the North Fork and Park Creek allotments.
H. Submitted letter to the Cottonwood BLM office recommending closure of four allotments, one on the Salmon River east of Riggins and three on the Little Salmon River south of Riggins.
I. Submitted a letter to the Forest Service complimenting them on closing the Crooked Creek and Mahogany Butte allotments
J. Submitted a letter to the Forest Service recommending closure of the Snakey and Kelly allotments at the USDA Sheep Experiment Station.
K. Magden Allotment: Between 2007 and 2016 IDWSF, through Tri-State, contributed $104,167 for this buyout.
L. Of the identified Tier 1 domestic sheep grazing allotments, approximately 57 have been closed and/or converted. The majority of the sheep ranchers that worked with wild sheep advocates are in the ranching and agricultural business.