Spring Fling was Amazing!
Our 5th Annual Spring Fling took place Thursday, April 20th at the exclusive Stone Eagle Golf Club and was a great success! Everyone enjoyed a fun putting contest along with the most gorgeous weather and views you could ask for. Dinner was delicious and the evening culminated in a rousing silent and live auction. In fact, the surprise live auction items added during the event stole the show! Marker Broadcasting donated two tickets to Stagecoach and Sensei Porcupine Creek donated two dinners for four guests at their ultra-exclusive Nobu restaurant! Thank you to all of our sponsors, donors, and guests for making this an evening to remember!
Most lambs have been born by now and many of them are still alive in the two Santa Rosa herds we study from Rancho Mirage to La Quinta, which is good news. However, the San Jacinto herd in Palm Springs isn’t having the same success. A number of lambs born in this herd have already died. It’s disappointing and possible that predation and proximity to urbanization/heavy recreation may be playing a role. Many of the ewes in this herd choose to live near the Lykken trail, one of the most popular trails in the valley, and are constantly being disturbed. They can adapt or habituate to this activity, but it can make them less vigilant to predators as well as their lambs.
We’re grateful to see the northern and central Santa Rosa herds with many lambs alive right now. Lambing extends through June so we are still looking for lambs we haven’t documented yet. Most of the ewes are unmarked and we see them as we track the ones with collars so it’s helpful if hikers let us know when they see the sheep, particularly lambs. You can call 760-346-7334 or email firstname.lastname@example.org and photos are always helpful. Thanks in advance for your help!
Palm Springs Ewe Goes Home
Last month, we reported that a collared ewe from the San Jacinto Mountains in Palm Springs had crossed ranges into the northern Santa Rosa Mountains (NSRM) going as far east as the hills of Rancho Mirage mingling with various groups of sheep. She continued her time in the NSRM until the end of April when she finally crossed back to the San Jacinto’s. We’ve been wondering how long she’d spend in the NSRM and two months was a long time! She has more knowledge of this other range now and may bring others with her next time she chooses to travel. It’s been neat to witness and we’ll see if she crosses back again as the year continues.
Snakes Are Out
With the warmer weather the snakes have been out so watch your step while hiking! In the past two weeks, we’ve seen four snakes in the field, including three rattlesnakes. Contrary to popular belief, rattlesnakes are not aggressive and won’t chase you. However, they can strike if startled so be aware of your surroundings.
*A Southwestern Speckled Rattlesnake (Crotalus pyrrhus) in the shade of a rock
Mother’s Day Gift Ideas
Need a special gift for your mother? Here are a few ideas and the best part is that the proceeds go directly to helping the endangered Peninsular bighorn sheep!
Give a gift membership to the Institute – memberships start at just $25/year, are tax-deductible & they can join our member hikes!
Adopt a Bighorn – $100 for a lamb, $150 for a ewe or ram: www.bighorninstitute.org/adopt-a-bighorn
Feed the captive herd for a week - $150 (donation only-not actual feeding)
Help track radio-collared bighorn for a month - $500 (donation only – not actual monitoring)
To donate, please visit our website www.BighornInstitute.org, email (email@example.com) or call us at 760-346-7334.