These headshots were taken as I hiked the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument of New Mexico in search of what Mother Nature provides.
New Mexico bighorn sheep historically speaking have never been widespread in the Northern part of the Land of Enchantment. There’s documented evidence of New Mexico bighorn sheep in White Rock Canyon, the Manzano Mountains and the Pecos and Wheeler Peak Wilderness areas. By the early 20th century, the bighorn had been essentially wiped out due to hunting and diseases brought in state by domestic livestock.
In 2006, 25 sheep were captured in the Pecos Wilderness and transported to public land on the West Rim of the Rio Grande Gorge, thus joining 23 bighorn sheep already in place across the Rio Grande on Taos Pueblo Tribal Lands. According to Pam Herrera-Olivas, in 2007, a wildlife biologist for the BLM’s Taos Field Office, “the new herd produced 12 lambs this spring, and they’re in excellent health.”
(click on any image to enlarge)
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