Briefs: Local Outdoots October 19, 2008

Info sought on illegally killed bighorn

• Officials from the Colorado Division of Wildlife are seeking information about 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.
An anonymous tip reported the ram, but when officers arrived at the site, 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.
The area where the bighorn was killed has been closed to sheep hunting since 1993 after a die off of bighorns.
Anyone with information about this incident should call Brent Woodward at 1-719-850-6336; or Operation Game Thief at 1-877-265-6648.
Tips can be given anonymously.

Campgrounds at two lakes closed

• The Steamboat Lake and Pearl Lake campgrounds north of Steamboat Springs have been closed. Officials with Colorado State Parks said the closures will facilitate an ongoing forestry project aimed at managing mountain pine beetle, as well as protect visitors from potential hazards from dying and dead trees.
Visitors to Steamboat Lake State Park still may use the campsites at the Stamboat Lake Marina. Cabins also are available.
At Pearl Lake, the two yurts will also be available this winter.

Elusive birds seen in western Colorado

• Researchers from the Rocky Mountain Bird observatory have confirmed for the first time in 10 years the presence of yellow-billed cuckoos in western Colorado.
The bird was considered extirpated in the area, but reports from 2003-2007 include sightings along the North Fork of the Gunnison River between Paonia and Hotchkiss.
A survey this past summer by birders turned up six breeding locations near Hotchkiss and another near Paonia.
Cuckoos also were located near Nucla and along the Yampa River in Moffat Country. The Colorado Division of Wildlife has listed the yellow-billed cuckoo as a Species of Greatest Conservation Need.

Fishing guide to discuss places on river

• Fly fishing the upper Colorado River will be featured at Tuesday’s meeting of the Grand Valley Angler’s chapter of Trout Unlimited and Federation of Flyfishers.
The meeting will begin at 6 p.m. at the Piñon Grill at Tiara Rado Golf Club, 2075 South Broadway.
Fishing guide Jack Bombardier, owner and opoerator of Confluence Casting, will speak about fishing the Flat Tops and some little-known parts of the Colorado River between State Bridge and Dotsero. The meeting is open to the public.

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