Browsing Journal of Range Management, Volume 38, Number 2 (March 1985) by Authors
Sheep Losses to Predators on a California Range, 1973-1983Scrivner, J. H.; Howard, W. E.; Murphy, A. H.; Hays, J. R. (Society for Range Management, 1985-09-01)Predation at the University of California Hopland Field Station was evaluated for an 11-year period beginning in 1973. Of those lambs placed on range, an average of 2.7% were killed each year by predators. An average of 1.5% of the ewes were killed. When the number of missing animals which were killed was estimated, the average annual predation rate for lambs and ewes killed was 10.4 and 3.8%, respectively. For all known ewe and lamb deaths, respectively, 45% and 26% were caused by predators, 14% and 28% died from causes other than predation, and 41% and 46% died from unknown causes. Of those sheep killed by predators, 89% were killed by coyotes (Canis latrans), 8% by dogs, and 1% each by black bear (Ursus americanus), mountain lion (Felis concolor), and golden eagle (Aquila chrysaetos). More sheep were killed by coyotes from October to March than from April to September and the annual number of sheep killed by coyotes and dogs has increased since the beginning of the study. Not including the value of missing animals which were killed, the present value of livestock killed by predators was estimated to be $62,364.