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  • Expanding Sheep Draw Units?

    I hear talk that a few biologists are considering expanding the number of units that need to be drawn to inorder to hunt sheep. While this may be in the infancy of discussion, it has RAMifications for the future. I thought the "sealing process" was put in place to keep everyone honest. This was the limiting factor for the harvest numbers while allowing more hunters to participate in the sport. What dynamics are now in play that may expand more sheep units to draw only?

  • #2
    outa be intersting how the public reacts, i think it we have more draw areas the quality of the hunts will go up and the permits will be spread out enough that more people will have a chance at drawing...maybe instead of three choices for draw apps, give us four or five, if they create that many new draw areas. I think overall it would make a difference in how hunts go, guides wouldn't like it much unless they get non resident preference like kodiak bears. but i don't see that happening for sheep. i think it would be an overall improvment in sheep hunting, but maybe not a few attitudes.
    Www.blackriverhunting.com
    Master guide 212

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    • #3
      As someone who loves being in the mountains in August, at least selfishly I hope this doesn't happen. More often than not I am unsuccessful on my walk-in sheep hunts, but at least I have the chance to pursue them with nothing more than an over-the-counter tag. I'd hate to see that opportunity vanish, even if it did mean higher success rates and larger rams.

      I haven't thought this through as far as biological and management implications. Maybe there are some merits....any thoughts?

      -Brian

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      • #4
        Can things get any worse up here? I am already disgusted with the way things are going, may as well add some more fuel to the fire. I can already envision the day that I will be pumped cuz I drew a sheep tag after years of applying in a place I used to hunt every year. Yee haw

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        • #5
          another tool

          I'm not a biologist, but it appears to me that their job (at least at fish and game) entails managing harvest levels. We are now at full curl for harvest ticket sheep. When there was less pressure, less than a full curl restriction was adequate to keep harvest levels in check. Now in some areas, we have both a draw and a full curl requirement. I think the draw is just another tool that managers can use to keep maintain sustainable harvest levels.

          If I were a wildlife manager and I saw unsustainable harvest levels in specific areas, then it seems likely that I would consider drawing permits.

          I feel that I have been very luck with drawing permits. Winning a permit makes for some great hunting. It beats the heck out of an Eklutna Lake Closed Area!

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          • #6
            i'm pretty sure only the places that are hurting the worst would go to a draw, alot of the ak range, brooks and even SOME of the talkeetnas would probably stay over the counter.
            either way, i'd rather see the bio's taking care of the sheep, rather than taking care of the hunters. as much as i'd hate to have to draw a tag to hunt sheep in the area that i guide now, i'd rather see a draw there with some sheep still around and the chance to at least hunt them,rather than people there and no sheep.
            i suppose it'll come down to a give and take on our part.
            Www.blackriverhunting.com
            Master guide 212

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            • #7
              better success, bigger rams...?

              perhaps in some areas, but the most recent area to go from a general hunt to a drawing is round mtn, and in the last 2 years 5 hunters have taken one ram, and it is a safe bet it was barely legal...
              the purpose of that hunt being changed was the sheer numbers of folks heading up the trail every opening day. now as it is, you have less chance of drawing than the TMA, and way less chance of killing, let alone seeing, a legal ram; but there will only be 2 other guys hunting there with you...
              of course, the area is so small you will probably see them<grin>.
              Alaska Board of Game 2015 tour... "Kicking the can down the road"
              http://www.alaskabackcountryhunters.org/

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              • #8
                Or Expand the PREDATOR CONTROL PROGRAM. Your choice, make your voice heard. Collective input is way better than individual input to the BOG.
                "96% of all Internet Quotes are suspect and the remaining 4% are fiction."
                ~~Abraham Lincoln~~

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                • #9
                  sheep draws

                  I don't like the idea of more draw areas myself. Just getting to be more and more like the lower 48. Unfortunately, some units could probably use some help in managing the sheep numbers/hunters. Even though people use the Brooks as a go to if you don't draw-----it's getting hammered hard I understand. Now people are saying there are guides all over the place in about every drainage. Personally, I don't believe guides should have preference. Some of them are limited in their numbers of clients, but I don't believe all are? Talking to one of the transporters this year, he even mentioned maybe FWP should limit the number of sheep hunters a transporter can legally bring in/out, but I don't know if I agree with that either. It sure is nice to be able to hunt sheep as residents every year, and more limitations make that more and more difficult. Tough topic.

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                  • #10
                    PREDATOR control...

                    uhh...unless i'm wrong, we are PREDATORS.
                    so, in essence we ARE talking about PREDATOR control.
                    Alaska Board of Game 2015 tour... "Kicking the can down the road"
                    http://www.alaskabackcountryhunters.org/

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                    • #11
                      I thought the idea of the harvest units (non-drawing areas) going to the full curl (or 8 yo) requirement was for a sustainable harvest. After all, if you don't kill the young rams, there will always be rams... I guess, it could effect the genetics of the herd, trophy size wise, because it *might* could come down to all the full curl or 8 yo rams getting killed, then leave only the younger rams to breed. Can't see where changing areas to drawing would have any effect other than increasing trophy size by allowing at least some rams to reach their optimum potential.

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                      • #12
                        Hell I saw 7 outof 9 rams in one drainage this year that were all close to or 3/4 curl. So the population is healthy its just that the guides clean out all the legal rams in a given area and then move on to somewhere else next year. And my statement is not speculation it is fact that I later found out after returning from my fly in sheep hunt this year. The only reason I was able to be taken in there is because the guide who has been hunting it for 5 years moved on to another drainage. Sounds like a real fair shake, huh?

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                        • #13
                          Guides

                          How about eliminating the non - resident guide requirement for sheep. In fact make it illegal to guide for sheep. I bet this would knock the down the sheep harvest quite a bit. This not only would give the average guy in the lower 48 a chance just to be in sheep country, but it would also give us residents a chance of harvesting more legal sheep. I'm sick of seeing guide tents and fake camps up weeks in advance of the season.

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                          • #14
                            Personally I think their ought to be a draw for guides. Reduce the number of guides allowed and then have all the guides put in for the ability to guide. That would open up a whole bunch of areas for everyone else. I had my heart set on flying into a certain location in the Alaska Range this year and after calling all the air charters that fly into that part of the raneg , they all said no. They all said there are several guides working that area so I cant take you in there. Man that chaps my *****!

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                            • #15
                              all

                              make all areas draws for non residents

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