Good Hunting Opportunities In China


Published: February - 2006

Sheep hunters will be glad to hear there are some new hunting opportunities in China. You'll remember we told you back in October that China had approved some new hunts for Himalayan blue sheep in the Tibetan border territories, near Bhutan and Nepal. What is significant about that development, you'll recall, is that this is the first time China has allowed hunting for this species. Previously, Nepal was the only place a hunter could take a Himalayan blue sheep, before hunting was shut down due to insurgents there. And while neighboring Pakistan recently began offering Himalayan blue sheep hunts as well, the costs are quite high at $17,000 and the permits are very few. That makes the new Chinese hunts the best way to go for this species.

Now, two more areas in China have opened to hunting, one for Himalayan blue sheep and another for a population of sheep that Gretchen Stark of Safari Outfitters hopes will be named a new species. This blue sheep is located in the Helanshan Mountains between Inner Mongolia and Ningxia Province. Stark says the sheep here are completely isolated from other blue sheep populations in China and have developed unique horns that curve out at a different angle. Also, while most blue sheep in China live at high attitudes, the Helanshan sheep are found at low altitudes of 4,500 to 9,000 feet, a very different habitat from others of this species. Stark says there is an excellent population of these sheep, which are not at all spooky and should provide good opportunities for rifle, bow and handgun hunters.

She says this should be a relatively easy hunt, with comfortable accommodations in a nearby resort. Stark is charging $6,900 per hunter in groups of three or more. A second blue sheep may be taken for another $2,500; and, in the fall, hunters can take a variant of the Asian wapiti (Alashan wapiti) for an additional $8,500. Arrival is in Beijing, where clients overnight and fly the next day to Yinchuan. A representative meets hunters in Beijing and escorts them through customs. This........(continued)

 
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