The only hunting currently allowed on San Andres National Wildlife Refuge is for population reduction hunts on oryx or gemsbok (oryx gazella). The oryx is a species of antelope originally found in southern Africa. This animal was introduced onto White Sands Missile Range in the late 1960's by the New Mexico Department of Game & Fish (NMDGF).
Oryx are not native to this area and have proliferated in their new habitat. They are causing damage to Refuge grasslands and riparian areas. They may pose disease and competition threats to both desert bighorn sheep and desert mule deer. The Refuge is interested in eliminating these non-natives from the Refuge and one way to reach that goal is through holding public population reduction hunts to reduce oryx numbers.
The Refuge conducts these population reduction hunts from November to April each year. Approximately 50 oryx are removed each year. People allowed onto the Refuge for the population reduction hunts are drawn from a hunter list established by the NMDGF. Please contact the NMDGF at (505) 476-8000 to receive information and your annual application.