Bighorn sheep killed illegally near Creede

Colorado Division of Wildlife officials are seeking information regarding the illegal killing of a Rocky Mountain bighorn ram on Oct. 14 in Mineral County in southern Colorado.

 A $1,000 reward is being offered for information that leads to the arrest of people involved in the incident.

 The DOW received an anonymous tip from someone who saw the dead ram in the area of Pool Table Mountain, 1.1 miles up U.S. Forest Service Road 600, about 7 miles south of the town of Creede.

 By the time wildlife officers arrived at the location the ram had been removed. Wildlife officials believe the bighorn was shot between 6:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. The incident occurred during the first 2008 big game rifle season. Within 100 yards of the location three elk had also been shot, presumably legally.

 The area where the bighorn was killed is on the border of big game management units 76 and 79.  This area has been closed to sheep hunting since 1993 following a die-off of bighorns.

 “The herd has been making some progress toward recovery, almost to the point that the DOW is considering opening a season again,” said Brent Woodward, district wildlife manager.

 Anyone who has information about this incident should call Woodward at (719) 850-6336; or Operation Game Thief at (877) 265-6648. Tips can be given anonymously.