Friday, November 6, 2009

Bighorn Sheep Festival in Moab - November 20-21, 2009

Head-butting bighorn rams fighting it out for the rights to mate with the top female sheep in the herd. How often do you get a chance to see exciting wildlife behavior like this in a wilderness setting?

Only once a year at best. Most of the year rams (male) and ewes (females) hardly interact at all, living their lives in separate family groups. But at the Bighorn Sheep Festival in Moab in late November, you'll have an opportunity to see some of the most exciting activity of the year. The breeding season, or "rut," is in full swing and male bighorns are clashing horns in their annual competition to attract the attention of the lovely ladies.

The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources is hosting its annual Bighorn Sheep Festival in Moab this November 20th and November 21st. DWR biologists will keep a watchful eye on the whereabouts of Moab's bighorn sheep leading up to the event, and guide those attending to the most likely spots for a sighting. Biologists will lead the group to likely spots near paved roads in Moab Canyon and along the Colorado River Corridor. Event attendees should bring spotting scopes or binoculars if they can, and the biologists will provide them for those who can't. You're welcome to follow along in your own vehicle or join the group in vehicles provided by the DWR guides.

The guides will meet the public on Saturday morning (Nov 21) at 8am at the Moab information center. Sheep watchers should expect the event to last until early afternoon. While DWR Outreach Manager Brent Stettler can't guarantee a close-up encounter, but he adds, "We almost always see sheep."

For more info about the event visit the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources website. Or contact Brent Stettler personally at by phone at 435/613-3707, or by email at

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