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December 2018

Save-the-Date: Annual Membership Meeting

Bighorn Institute’s annual membership meeting will take place at 8:30 am on Saturday, February 2nd at the Institute. We will discuss our accomplishments in 2018 and plans for 2019. All members are welcome, but please RSVP at (760) 346-7334. We hope you can join us!

Public Outreach

In early December, we hosted a group of volunteers from Friends of the Desert Mountains to talk to them about the bighorn and the Institute’s conservation efforts. They lead interpretive hikes so it’s important that they know about the sheep. If you would like Bighorn Institute to give a talk at one of your upcoming events about the ecology and conservation of our local endangered Peninsular bighorn, please give us a call to schedule at 760-346-7334.

Member Hike

So far, we’re 3 for 3 with Member Hike success this season and we saw 9 sheep on our

last hike. Carrizo and Dead Indian Canyons will close January – October for the lambing and hot season for the sheep so we’ll be hiking elsewhere. Our next Member Hike will be Friday, January 11th at 8:00am. We would love to have you join us, but space is limited, no dogs, and you must RSVP for this first come first served hike. To sign up or for more information, please call us at 760-346-7334 or email us at

Another Ewe Drowned

In early December, another ewe drowned in the Coachella Canal in La Quinta. This is the third bighorn sheep that has drowned in the Coachella Canal in 2018 bringing the total number of bighorn drownings up to eight since 2012. The canal goes along the La Quinta golf courses and ends at Lake Cahuilla. The sheep cannot get out of the canal when they fall in and the sad thing is these deaths could have been prevented with a fence. We’re still waiting for the final fence environmental document to be released.

Rain & Wildflowers

In early December, we received almost 1” of rain at the Institute bringing our total to just over 3.5” for the year. We received nearly an inch of rain in October and we’re seeing an incredible phenomenon of wildflowers blooming in December. Brittlebush (flowers pictured), Indigo, Creosotes and more are in bloom now. It’s a sight to behold, but it makes us very curious about our normal spring wildflower season – will they bloom again? Stay tuned and we’ll let you know!

Tour de Palm Springs & BI

We’re putting together a team of walkers/bike riders for the 2019 Tour de Palm Springs to support the sheep! The event takes place Saturday, February 9th and there are plenty of options for all skill levels. You can walk 1.5 or 3 miles or bike ride 9, 26, 51 or 102 miles. If you register through Bighorn Institute, we get 100% of the proceeds! Not a walker or biker? You can still participate by buying raffle tickets and again, we get all proceeds from raffle tickets we sell. Walk registration is just $15, bike ride registration starts at $25 and raffle tickets are $1 each. You don’t have to be present to win the raffle prizes (all prizes are at least $50 value), just check their website after the event. So, lace up those sneakers or put on that helmet and let’s do this! For more information, call us at 760-346-7334 or email us at

Recent article:

Bighorn sheep watering hole could be drained by Cadiz water project, state says

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