Our Annual Party and Golf Classic fundraiser is fast approaching on Sunday and Monday, November 21st and 22nd at the exclusive Stone Eagle and we hope you’ll join us! Sunday’s Annual Party at The Aerie restaurant will be a night to remember with stunning views, a delectable dinner, live and silent auctions and more! The cost is $500/couple. Join us on the links for Monday’s Golf Classic with golf legends like Dave Stockton who will give a clinic prior to play. The cost is $500/person. If you are unable to join us, you can still be an event sponsor or auction donor. All proceeds benefit the endangered Peninsular bighorn. For more information, call the office 760-346-7334 or visit our website online www.bighorninstitute.org/fundraisers
After a long hiatus, we are happy to announce we will be starting up our Member Hikes again this season! It’s time to lace up those boots, grab your binoculars and hit the trails to look for bighorn sheep! Our first Member Hike will be Wednesday, November 10th. 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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ram in Snow Creek
There was an incredibly interesting sighting of a ram in Snow Creek recently, which is the northern extent of historic Peninsular bighorn habitat. We haven’t known bighorn sheep to go as far north as Snow Creek for years. It’s around 10 miles north of the sheep’s current range in Palm Springs. This is exciting news as it shows that with population growth in the San Jacinto Mountains herd, the bighorn are returning to their old stomping grounds and may expand back into it in the near future.
Urban Lamb Deaths
Two more lambs have died in La Quinta from urban-related causes. One lamb appeared to have been trapped in a garage in PGA West and died. The second lamb drowned in the Coachella Canal. This is the 17th known bighorn sheep that has drowned in this canal that should be fenced off by now. There have now been 34 urban-related bighorn sheep deaths on or near the La Quinta golf courses since a fence was required by the state and federal wildlife agencies in 2014. We have heard through the grapevine that PGA West has signed an agreement with the Coachella Valley Association of Governments to allow an easement for the fence, which has caused some of the delay in recent years. However, the fence wasn’t on the October agenda for the Coachella Valley Conservation Commission meeting, which was surprising. We’re still being told that fence construction should begin this fall, but the lack of the fence on the latest meeting agenda doesn’t bode well for that timeline. There’s still another month of fall so we’ll see. (Pictured: a ewe stands dangerously close to the edge of the Coachella Canal).
The California Department of Fish and Wildlife is capturing Peninsular bighorn sheep November 2nd in the mountains adjacent to Palm Springs and La Quinta. They plan to put 9 GPS collars on ewes in these herds. We didn’t receive many details, but hopefully, we can fill you in better next month. (Pictured: a ewe wearing a GPS collar).
Golf Cart Donation
We’re thrilled to report that we have the best supporters and you guys came through again big time! Last month, we asked for a golf cart since one of ours burned in a fire in late August. A long-time supporter generously donated a beautiful Club Car! We use electric golf carts to get around on our 300 acres and care for the captive herd. These carts minimize disturbance and stress to the captive sheep. We’re so grateful for this donation and for our amazing supporters!
Our field Jeep that was damaged in our late August golf cart fire has officially been totaled. The insurance company paid the settlement, which is around $20k short of what we need to purchase a “new” Jeep. With vehicle inventory at an all-time low and prices at an all-time high, we’re keeping our options open for a new or low-mileage used Jeep. This Jeep purchase wasn’t in our budget this year so we could sure use your help. If you’d like to give a little to the Jeep fund, we’d be most grateful. The Jeep allows us to get in the field and track the sheep. All donations are tax-deductible. Thank you, every little bit helps!
BI Resale Store
Bighorn Institute’s Resale Store at Antique Galleries of Palm Springs is going strong! If you have any smaller, high-quality items such as: jewelry, coins, bullion, pen sets, small clocks and watches, crystal, statuary and decorative items, antiques and collectibles, etc. please consider donating them to our Resale Store. All profits (l00%) benefit the bighorn AND all donations are tax-deductible! You can take your items directly to Antique Galleries of Palm Springs (505 E. Industrial Place, just south of downtown off Sunny Dunes) and ask for Mike or Thomas. If you can’t take your items in, give us a call and we can help collect them 760-346-7334. Thank you!
Good news for desert's bighorn sheep herds, once near extinction (desertsun.com)