New Mexico is a state known for its diverse wildlife, and among the many species that call this place home, the bighorn sheep is a prized one. The state has a unique draw system for hunting permits, and if you’re interested in hunting bighorn sheep, you’ll need to understand the draw odds to increase your chances of success.
What is the New Mexico Bighorn Sheep Draw?
The New Mexico Bighorn Sheep Draw is a lottery system that determines who gets to hunt bighorn sheep in the state. The draw is held once a year, and hunters can apply for the draw between January and April. The draw is open to both residents and non-residents, but the odds of getting a permit are different for each group.
Understanding the Draw Odds
The draw odds for bighorn sheep permits in New Mexico are determined by several factors, including the number of permits available, the number of applications received, and the preference points system. Preference points are awarded to hunters who apply for the draw but do not get a permit. The more preference points a hunter has, the better their odds of getting a permit in the future.
Resident vs. Non-Resident Odds
The odds of getting a bighorn sheep permit are higher for residents than non-residents. This is because the state allocates a certain percentage of permits to residents and a certain percentage to non-residents. For example, if there are 100 permits available, 80 may be allocated to residents and 20 to non-residents.
Applying for the Draw
To apply for the New Mexico Bighorn Sheep Draw, hunters must first purchase a hunting license and a game-hunting and fishing license. They must then submit an application and pay a non-refundable fee of $65. Applicants can apply for multiple hunts, but they must rank them in order of preference.
Results of the Draw
The draw results are typically announced in late June or early July. Successful applicants will receive a permit and must then purchase a habitat stamp and pay a fee for the hunt. Unsuccessful applicants will receive a preference point that they can use in future draws.
Tips for Increasing Your Odds
There are several things you can do to increase your odds of getting a bighorn sheep permit in the New Mexico draw. One is to accumulate preference points by applying for the draw every year. Another is to apply for hunts that have lower demand, as these typically have better odds. Finally, consider hiring a guide or outfitter who has experience hunting bighorn sheep in New Mexico.
The New Mexico Bighorn Sheep Draw is a unique system that allows hunters to have a chance at hunting one of the state’s most prized species. Understanding the draw odds is key to increasing your chances of success, and by following the tips outlined above, you can improve your odds and potentially land a bighorn sheep permit in the future.