Sunday the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife begun the process of collaring about 500 mule deer in the Southern Blue Mountain Range near Prineville.
The data from the deer will replace an older population model and improve an understanding of the range and movements of herds. The animals, mostly female, will be identified by a helicopter crew then captured using a special net gun. This process is supposed to take about 5 to 10 minutes per deer and is meant to reduce stress. In Oregon, big game tags are managed under 67 different Wildlife Management Units. But these boundaries have not been aligned with current mule deer behavior. Eventually, the data collected could lead to hunting season changes so tags better align with herd movements.
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