The Convict Creek herd unit was recently colonized by sheep who probably originated in the Wheeler Ridge herd. Backcountry skiiers on Esha Peak reported the first sighting of sheep in this area in January 2011, and Recovery Program staff confirmed the presence of the animals that June. In March 2013 the Recovery Program translocated three radio-collared adult ewes to the Esha Peak area to augment this small population and help us learn more about them.
As yet we have very little information about the Convict Creek sheep. Any evidence of natural range expansion by Sierra bighorn is very exciting, and we hope to keep close tabs on this population. If you are hiking or skiing in McGee Creek or on Esha Peak, Mount Stanford, Morgan North, or the Nevahbe Ridge, keep an eye out for sheep and make sure to report any sightings to the Sierra Nevada Bighorn Sheep Foundation and DFW’s Recovery Program.