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Cost and Trophy Fees for Bighorn Sheep Hunts

The average price to hunt a Desert Bighorn Sheep / Painted Desert Ram on a game ranch is between $1,000 and $4,000, which is considered affordable for an exotic animal with such a huge set of horns. The final total depends on the size of the rack, trophy fee, rifle or bow hunt, number of days, taxidermy fees, quality of accommodations, amenities and services available.

Painted Desert Ram Hunting Seasons

All year

Hunting Trophy Desert Bighorn Sheep

The painted ram, often known as the bighorn sheep, is quite nimble and agile. It can move at a great speed over very tough terrain, including steep slopes. It can also swim very well, giving it one more way to shake hunters and predators. It has an impressive set of horns and are found on both genders. The horns grow for the sheeps entire life, meaning older rams sport the largest curling horns, which are often more than 36 inches long and 12 inches in base circumference. Horns older than eight years could weigh over 30 pounds; hunters can use the growth rings to find the rams age.

Though these sheep are active during the day, theyll bed down and rest in the shade during the hottest hours. They are diurnal animals, so hunters should plan their hunts accordingly.

Physical Characteristics

Males are physically impressive, as stocky, heavy animals. They can be about five feet long and anywhere from 100 to 280 pounds. They have concave elastic hooves, which allow them to climb in very difficult terrain. They also have incredible eyesight, which they use to look for mountain lions, bobcats, and other predators ; including hunters. The coat is what really sets a painted desert ram apart. Many are spotted with black, brown and white.

Origin, Native Habitat and Countries

The Bighorn Painted Desert Ram is found in the mountains and deserts in the Southwest United States; it also runs down into northern Mexico. It can survive in very dry areas, as it has adapted to survive for long chunks of time;months, in some cases;without water, and it can recover from dehydration almost instantly when water is found.

The Rocky Mountain Bighorn Sheep often pick steep, rocky terrain, and theyve been seen in the foothills and alpine meadows of the Rocky Mountains. The sheep eat grass, forbs, sedges and even cacti, so their chosen habitats will have a mix of the four.

Behavior/Social Characteristics

Males use dominance hierarchies that center on the size of the horns. They’ll fight spectacularly when mating season hits. They back up and then charge over long distances, slamming into each other with their horns. This happens in August and September. The fight can last all day and some people have heard them at a distance of a mile.

The sheep do live in herds, which could have as many as 20 animals. These herds are typically the young and the females. Males will be in their own bachelor herds, which are even smaller.

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