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"This is a cool thread. I have all 13 big game animals in AZ. Elk, Coues deer, mule deer, desert bighorn, rocky mountain bighorn, antelope, buffalo, javelina, Merriams turkey, Goulds turkey, rio grande turkey, bear, mountain lion. Of the 13 I have harvested 10 with a bow. I have been very fortunate when it comes to the draw. I completed this by the age of 33."




Congratulations on your success. You obviously not only are lucky in the drawing process, but you also must be a very skilled hunter. Taking ten of those thirteen animals with a bow is quite an accomplishment.


However, as I pointed out years ago in this thread, there are only ten big game species in Arizona.


We have three subspecies of sheep -- desert (Ovis canadensis nelsoni and O.c. mexicana) and Rocky Mountain (O.c. canadensis), but these three represent only one species. The three subspecies of turkeys (Merriam's, Gould's, and Rio Grande) you mentioned are all the same species, Meleagris gallopavo.


My point is, if you were to count all subspecies of big game mammals and turkeys in our state, you would need to also include our two subspecies of mule deer (desert and Rocky Mountain) and two subspecies of mountain lion (North American cougar and Yuma puma). This gives us 16 types of big game animals.


As you know, a hunter cannot collect all 16 at present because he/she cannot take both of the desert sheep subspecies.


Bill Quimby

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I had no idea we had two subspecies of lions. Bill, just to be devil's advocate could a person take both subspecies of sheep if they had a raffle or auction tag? I am not sure if the once in a lifetime limit still applies, but my guess is it does not.

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Flatlander, you could take both species of desert sheep if you drew, won the raffle, or won the auction. You can only harvest one desert sheep through the draw the raffle and auction do not apply to the once and a lifetime rule. The raffle tag only allows you to hunt the northern units which are predominately inhabited by the nelsoni subspecies. Bill thanks for the information.



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