KINGMAN - The Mohave Sportsman Club's annual coyote reduction hunt, known as Antelope Eaters, is set to go on March 6-7, according to Linda Bell, one of the event's committee members.
The hunt was started many years ago at a time when there wasn't being much done to control coyote populations in Northern Arizona.
Herb Stipe was the president of the local club, and the hunt was his brainchild. Stipe wanted to bring together sportsmen from all over Arizona to come out one weekend each spring to hunt what many biologists say is the No. 1 predator of antelope and mule deer fawns, and even elk calves. Thus, Antelope Eaters was born.
The hunt has seen many changes over the years, and this year two- or three-person teams will be in the field trying to remove coyotes. Using a varmint call to try and lure in the predators into range is the most efficient method used by hunters.
The club also uses the hunt to conduct a very successful raffle to raise funds for the board of directors to attend important meetings around the state. Tickets for the raffle are just $5 each or five for $20. You don't have to participate in the hunt to purchase raffle tickets.
This year, a number of conservation groups and businesses have stepped up from all over Arizona to donate prizes for the MSC raffle.
The club will give away a brand new Savage model 16VSS rifle. A PSE bow and a Fox Pro FX 3 caller are just a few of the other items being offered. Varmint calls, videos and memberships into some of the state's conservation groups are all prizes that sportsmen can win.
Cost of the hunt is $50 for a two-person team, or $75 for a three-person team.
Entry forms can be found at all of the local gunshops and at the MSC 7 Mile Hill Range facility.
The hunt is once again headquartered at the Black Cat Bar in Seligman, and hunters will meet at 9 p.m. on Saturday evening and again at 2 p.m. on Sunday in the parking lot to draw for cash prizes.
Last year, more than 350 sportsmen from around the state and even a few from California and Nevada assisted in the club's efforts.
For more information on the hunt, contact the club's hunt chairman at (928) 681-4867.