|From left George Houston, president, Oregon Chapter, Foundation for North American Wild Sheep passes the car keys for the donated truck to Larry Cooper, ODFW deputy administrator, Wildlife Division at ODFW headquarters in Salem. The truck will be used in Hells Canyon Initiative efforts to restore bighorn sheep to the area.
SALEM, Ore.—The Oregon Chapter of the Foundation for North American Wild Sheep (OR-FNAWS) donated an $11,000 pickup truck to ODFW for use in the Hells Canyon Initiative, a multi-state effort to recover bighorn sheep and Rocky Mountain goat populations in the region.
The Chevy S-210, 4x4 truck will be used by an Enterprise, Ore.-based ODFW wildlife technician devoted to working on bighorn sheep and goat recovery. The technician’s job involves getting to various locations throughout Wallowa County so radio-collared sheep and goats can be monitored and tested for disease and so additional animals can be collared. Many of these locations are at high elevations off rough roads.
This is the second truck donated to the effort; a previous truck was donated by Tom and Connie Thompson of Aurora, Ore.
OR-FNAWS raised the money for the truck during a “Frenzy Auction” at its April 19, 2008 annual fundraiser held in Redmond.
“The significant recovery and research efforts underway in Hells Canyon could not be accomplished without the assistance of OR-FNAWS,” said Vic Coggins, ODFW district wildlife biologist, Wallowa County. “We thank them for donating this truck and all the help they’ve provided over the years.”
The Hells Canyon Initiative is a group formalized in 1997 to restore bighorns to the Hells Canyon area in Oregon, Washington and Idaho. All three state wildlife departments, the U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management and the Foundation for North American Wild Sheep (FNAWS) are members of the group. In addition, the Nez Perce Tribe, Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla, Oregon Hunters Association and chapters, FNAWS chapters, Shikar-Safari Club International and many individuals have provided funding or assistance with restoration efforts.