Bighorn’s Gordian Knot: Beyond the Dance of the Predator Prey Relationship
Interspersed with exclusive video, Leslie will discuss the complexity of issues facing the recovery of bighorn sheep; how mountain lions are being culled for bighorn relocations into their historic ranges; and what the future might hold for healthy bighorn populations.
“If we value bighorn sheep, then there needs to be a way to fund programs that support bighorns other than through hunts and super tags. There is something obscene in the sole financial support to save bighorns throughout the West—native wildlife that are in the public trust—relying on a sliver of mega-rich trophy hunters. Additionally, being dependent exclusively on hunters for bighorn dollars creates a vicious cycle that pressures agencies to put more bighorns on every mountain so as to increase revenue. It also fuels extreme predator management programs like in New Mexico, where the culling of lions never ends despite bighorn herds that are thriving.” – Bighorns’ Gordian Knot
About Leslie Patten:
Leslie Patten is a naturalist and writer. Living for over fifteen years in Northwest Wyoming, she loves exploring, hiking, and camera trapping wildlife. In her book Ghostwalker: Tracking a Mountain Lion’s Soul through Science and Story, she interviewed over fifty wildlife biologists, trackers, conservationists and houndsmen to reveal the hidden world of mountain lions. Her most recent book, Shadow Landscape, is a compilation of wildlife stories. Continuing her research into mountain lions, Shadow Landscape contains an essay entitled Bighorns’ Gordian Knot that investigates the tangled and politically fraught issue of bighorn sheep and mountain lions.