AR-News: (DC) Sport hunting hits evolutionary traits in bighorn sheep

Animalara2003 at aol.com Animalara2003 at aol.com
Wed Dec 10 14:49:16 EST 2003


Sheep horn size is being reduced due to hunter selection
Trophy hunting is driving down the horn size of big horn sheep--an 
evolutionary response caused by killing the largest rams before they reach their 
breeding peak, according to research produced in part at the University of Alberta. 
By shooting the most desirable rams--those with large horns and high body 
weight--before they are able to achieve high rates of paternity, hunters have 
depleted genes for big horns and fast growth for the population. Scientists have 
noticed similar results with fish, but this research marks the first time 
investigators have discovered these findings in bighorn sheep. The research 
appears in this week's edition of the prestigious scientific journal, "Nature." 





full story:
http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2003-12/uoa-shh120903.php

"As custodians of the planet it is our responsibility to deal with all 
species with kindness, love, and compassion. That these animals suffer through human 
cruelty is beyond understanding. Please help to stop this madness."
-- Richard Gere
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