In 2020, the Teton Sheep Working Group held three collaborative workshops which developed community-based recommendations for balancing bighorn sheep winter habitat needs with backcountry recreation. The Teton Backcountry Alliance supported this collaborative process and intends to participate and assist the effort financially into the future.
Below are the dates and general topics discussed at each workshop.
- Biologists shared expert knowledge related to Teton bighorn sheep and winter backcountry recreation. The community was provided with the context and background needed to fully engage in this issue.
- Small break-out groups discussed and recorded community interests, concerns, thoughts, values, and more.
- Biologists shared additional expert scientific information about specific biological concerns with the Teton bighorn sheep herd. Experts within the recreation community shared their perspectives.
- Small break-out groups brainstormed conceptual solutions to this issue. What can we do? What creative ideas do we have?
March 5th, 2020: “Geographical solutions”
- Small break-out groups dug into specific geographical solutions where bighorn sheep habitat and recreation overlap. Large maps were consulted. Groups discussed potential solutions and compromises in detail for specific areas. Specific community suggestions and proposals were considered.
April 9th, 2020 – cancelled due to COVID-19 pandemic: “What can the agencies pursue?”
- Prior to the last-minute cancellation of the fourth and final workshop due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Teton Sheep Working Group planned to take the community’s input to the government agencies and discuss which recommendations could or could not be pursued, and present this information at the April 9th workshop. They intended to explain which suggestions were viable, which were not, and why. Unfortunately, this final meeting was not held. (No formal decisions have been made at this point.)
For more information on TBCA’s ongoing involvement in bighorn sheep management click here.