Wildlife Population and Movement Summary

MuleDeer_WattsChama Peak Land Alliance (CPLA) contracted with Tom Watts to complete a study of mule deer and elk in the Alliance region. The CPLA Report was an attempt to consolidate all of the pertinent information regarding mule deer and elk populations inhabiting the upper San Juan and Chama River Basins for the benefit of CPLA Members and landowners interested in maintaining healthy wildlife populations in the region. Numerous past and on-going radio-telemetry studies have documented the migratory patterns of mule deer and elk in this region, and highlighted the need for cooperative management among the 4 wildlife agencies which oversee harvest in these shared herds. In recent years the mule deer population has exhibited marginal fawn recruitment rates, and declining mature buck:doe ratios, indicative of a declining population and excessive harvest rates. The elk population has also suffered from reduced recruitment in recent years, coupled with chronically high bull elk harvest rates, resulting in a decreasing population characterized by very low bull:cow and mature bull:cow ratios. The two state wildlife management agencies accounted for approximately 90% of the elk and mule deer harvest in the CPLA Project Area, and the need for coordinated harvest has never been greater.

For a copy of the full report, click here