CPW seeks public comment on Southeast Region pronghorn herd management plans

by Colorado Parks & Wildlife

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Public input is being sought by Colorado Parks and Wildlife about how it intends to manage 11 pronghorn herds across its Southeast Region over the next 10 years.

CPW staff has spent months drafting proposed management plans for the pronghorn herds that extend from Leadville down the Arkansas River valley to Kansas and New Mexico, as well as from the Pikes Peak region east to Kansas and as far north as Interstate 70 and Burlington on the far eastern plains.

The draft plans are now open to public review and comment through Feb. 20.

The plans reflect CPW’s efforts to balance the biological capabilities of the herd and its habitat with the public’s demand for wildlife recreational opportunities.  

“The proposed herd management plans will guide management of the 11 pronghorn herds in the Southeast Region for a 10-year period through 2033,” said Julie Stiver, CPW’s senior wildlife biologist for the Southeast Region. “These 11 pronghorn herds contain an estimated 33,000 pronghorn, representing nearly 42 percent of the statewide total population estimate of 78,000 pronghorn.​”

For example, the final plans will help CPW officials decide how many pronghorn should exist in each GMU and the proper ratio of males to females.

The selection of population and sex ratio objectives drive important decisions including: 

  • ​How many animals must be harvested to maintain or move toward the objectives. 

  • What types of hunting seasons are required to achieve the harvest objective.

The 11 herds affected are: PH-5 Haswell, PH-6 Hugo, PH-7 Thatcher, PH-8 Yoder, PH-12 Cheyenne, PH-13 Tobe, PH-18 Two Buttes, PH-19 Last Chance, PH-20 Wet Mountain, PH-31 Fort Carson and PH-39 Collegiate. 

CPW is proposing new management objectives for the following herds: Hugo, Thatcher, Yoder, Last Chance, Wet Mountain and Fort Carson. The management objectives for these herds are more than six years old.

In addition, CPW is proposing an adjustment to the recently approved management objectives for Two Buttes and extensions to the recently approved objectives for herds Haswell, Cheyenne, Tobe, and Collegiate. 

Extensions and adjustments are recommended when CPW staff believe a continuation of the previous objectives, course of management actions and strategies are sufficient for a given herd. CPW is not proposing any changes to objectives or management approach for the five HMPs that were approved by the Parks and Wildlife Commission within the last few years.

The management plans are critical because they are the basis for CPW decisions on annual pronghorn license sales. CPW relies on hunter harvest to manage  pronghorn populations to meet population and sex ratio objectives. 

The 11 pronghorn HMPs are open to public comment through Feb. 20. Please submit public comments to Stiver at julie.stiver@state.co.us.

Comments also will be accepted by mail addressed to:

Colorado Parks and Wildlife
Attn. Julie Stiver
4255 Sinton Road
Colorado Springs, CO 80907

To view the draft pronghorn herd management plans for CPW’s Southeast Region, go to: https://sites.google.com/state.co.us/draft-herd-management-plans/home?authuser=0

More Reports

DENVER - Colorado Parks and Wildlife is considering changes to policies and regulations that direct the distribution of big game...... Read More

GUNNISON, Colo. – Years of consideration and conservation work all led to a golden moment for two pristine rivers in...... Read More