John Wehausen

Wildlife Population Ecology

UC White Mountain Research Station
3000 E. Line Street
Bishop, Ca. 93514
(760) 873-4563

Photo courtesy of National Bighorn Sheep Organization PhotoGallery                                               



B.A. (1972) Univ. of California, Berkeley (Biol. Sci. Field Major).
M.S. (1973) Univ. of California, Davis (Range Management).
Ph.D. (1980) Univ. of Michigan (Nat. Resources - Wildlife Management).

Current Research:

Dr. Wehausen has been developing long term data sets on the demography of bighorn sheep populations in California for a quarter century. These vary from populations occupying high mountains to low desert ranges. This work focuses on short term conservation problems while simultaneously developing long term data sets that address fundamental theory underlying conservation approaches. A broad range of factors that influence demography are researched.

Selected Publications:

Wehausen,J.D. "Comment on desert bighorn as relicts: further considerations." Wildlife Society Bulletin 12 (1984): 82-85. pdf file

Wehausen,J.D., Bleich,V.C., and Weaver,R.A. "Mountain sheep in California: a historical perspective on 108 years of full protection." Trans.Western Section, The Wildlife Society 23 (1987): 65-74 pdf file

Wehausen,J.D. "Some probabilities associated with sampling for diseases in bighorn sheep." Desert Bighorn Council Transactions 31 (1987): 8-10 pdf file

Wehausen, J. D. 1990. Some potentially adaptive characters of mountain sheep populations in the Owens Valley region. Pages 256-267 in C. A. Hall, Jr., V. Doyle-Jones, and B. Widawski, eds. Natural history of Eastern California and high altitude research. White Mountain Research Station Symposium Vol 3, White Mountain Research Sta., Bishop, CA.

Bleich, V. C., J. D. Wehausen, and S. A. Holl. 1990. Desert-dwelling mountain sheep: conservation implications of a naturally fragmented distribution. Conserv. Biol. 4:383-390.

Bleich, V. C., J. D. Wehausen, K. R. Jones, and R. A. Weaver. 1990. Status of bighorn sheep in California, 1989 and translocations from 1971 through 1989. Trans. Desert Bighorn Counc. 34:24-26.

Bleich, V. C., J. D. Wehausen, J. A. Keay, J. G. Stahmann, and M. W. Berbach. 1990. Radiotelemetry collars for mountain sheep: a cautionary note. Trans. Desert Bighorn Counc. 34:6-8. pdf file

Carey, H. V., and J. D. Wehausen. 1991. Mammals. Pages 437-460 in C. A. Hall, ed. Natural history of the White-Inyo Range. Univ. of Calif. Press, Berkeley.

Jaeger, J. R., J. D. Wehausen, and V. C. Bleich. 1991. Evaluation of time-lapse photography for estimating population parameters. Trans. Desert Bighorn Counc. 35:5-8.

Bleich, V. C., C. D. Hargis, J. A. Keay, and J. D. Wehausen. 1991. Interagency coordination and the restoration of wildlife populations. Pages 277-284 in J. Edelbrock and S. Carpenter (eds.). Natural areas and Yosemite: prospects for the future. U. S. Nat. Park Service, Denver Service Center, Denver, CO.

Berger, J. and J. D. Wehausen. 1991. Consequences of a mammalian predator-prey disequilibrium in the Great Basin desert. Conserv. Biol. 5:244-248.

Wehausen, J. D. 1992. The role of precipitation and temperature in the winter range: diet quality of mountain sheep of the Mount Baxter herd, Sierra Nevada. Pages 227-238 in C. A. Hall Jr., V. Doyle-Jones, and B. Widawski, eds. The history of water: eastern Sierra Nevada, Owens Valley, White-Inyo Mountains. White Mountain Research Sta. Symp. Vol. 4, White Mountain Research Station, Bishop, CA.

Wehausen, J. D. 1992. The role of precipitation and temperature in the winter range diet quality of mountain sheep of the Mount Baxter herd, Sierra Nevada. Bienn. Symp. North. Wild Sheep and Goat Counc. 8:279-292.

Wehausen, J. D., and R. R. Ramey II. 1993. A morphometric reevaluation of the Peninsular bighorn subpecies. Trans. Desert Bighorn Counc. 37:1-10. pdf file

Jaeger, J. R., J. D. Wehausen, and V. C. Bleich. 1993. Limits in the resolution of LORAN-C for aerial telemetry studies. Trans. Desert Bighorn Counc. 37:20-23.

Krausman, P. R., J. D. Wehausen, M. C. Wallace, and R. C. Etchberger. 1993. Rumen characteristics of desert races of mountain sheep and desert mule deer. Southwest. Natur. 38:172-174.

Torres, S. G, V. C. Bleich, and J. D. Wehausen. 1994. Status of bighorn sheep in California, 1993. Trans. Desert Bighorn Counc. 38:17-28.

Wehausen, J. D. 1995. Fecal measures of diet quality in domestic and wild ruminants. J. Wildlife Manage. 59:816-823. pdf file

Bleich, V. C., J. D. Wehausen, R. R. Ramey II, and J. L. Rechel. 1996. Metapopulation theory and mountain sheep: implications for conservation. Pages 353-373 in D. R. McCullough, ed. Metapopulations and wildlife conservation management. Island Press, Washington D.C.

Wehausen, J. D. 1996. Effects of mountain lion predation on bighorn sheep in the Sierra Nevada and Granite Mountains of California. Wildl. Soc. Bull. 24:471-479. pdf file

Torres, S. G., V. C. Bleich, and J. D. Wehausen. 1996. Status of bighorn sheep in California - 1995. Desert Bighorn Council Trans. 40:27-34.

Bleich, V. C., S. G. Torres, J. D. Wehausen, and T. A. Swank. 1996. Translocations of mountain sheep (Ovis canadensis californiana) in California. Proc. Bienn. Symp. North. Wild Sheep and Goat Counc. 10:164-166.

Davis, J. L., C. B. Chetkiewicz, V. C. Bleich, G. Raygorodetsky, B. M. Pierce, J. W. Ostergard, and J. D. Wehausen. 1996. A device to safely remove immobilized mountain lions from trees and cliffs. Wildl. Soc. Bull. 24:537-539.

Bleich, V. C., R. T. Bowyer, and J. D. Wehausen. 1997. Sexual segregation in mountain sheep: resources or predation? Wildl. Monogr. 134:1-50.

Pierce, B. M., V. C. Bleich, C. B. Chetkievicz, and J. D. Wehausen.1998. Timing of mountain lion feeding bouts. J. Mamm. 79:222-226.

Wehausen, J. D. 1999. Rapid extinction of mountain sheep populations revisisted. Conserv. Biol. 13:378-384.

Selected Recent Publications:

John D. Wehausen and Rob Roy Ramey II. 2000. Cranial Morphometric and Evolutionary Relationships in the Northern Range of Ovis canadensis. Jl. Mammology 81(1):145-161. pdf file

J.D. Wehausen, R.R.Ramey, and C.W.Epps. 2004. Experiments in DNA Extraction and PCR Amplification from Bighorn Sheep Feces: the Importance of DNA Extraction Method. Jl. of Heredity 96(6):503-509. pdf file

Epps,C.W., McCullough,D.R., Wehausen,J.D., Bleich,V.C., and Rechel,J.L. "Effects of climate change on population persistence of desert-dwelling mountain sheep in California." Conservation Biology 18 (2004): 102-113 pdf file

Epps, C. W., P. J. Palsboll, J. D. Wehausen, R. R. Ramey II, and D. R. McCullough. 2005. Highways block gene flow and cause rapid decline in genetic diversity of desert bighorn sheep. Ecology Letters 8:1029-1038. pdf file

Wehauesen, John D., Vernon C. Bleich and Rob R. Ramey II 2005. Correct Nomenclature for Sierra Nevada Bighorn Sheep. California Fish and Game 91(3):216-218 pdf file

Wehausen, John D. 2005 Nutrient Predictability, Birthing Seasons, and Lamb Recruitment for Desert Bighorn Sheep. pp. 37-50 in J. Goerrissen and J. M André, eds. Sweeney Granite Mountains Desert Research Center 1978-2003: A Quarter Century of Research and Teaching. University of California Natural Reserve Program, Riverside, CA 2005 pdf file