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Boone and Crockett honors Horace, North Dakota, hunter for record book caribou

Doug Wendel’s Central Canada barren ground caribou ranks second for the three-year awards period.

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Doug Wendel of Horace, North Dakota, was honored by the Boone and Crockett Club for this Central Canada barren ground caribou, which officially scored 351½ points and ranks second in the club's Big Game Awards program for entries taken between Jan. 1, 2019, and Dec. 31, 2021.
Contributed/Boone and Crockett
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MISSOULA, Mont. – A Horace, N.D., hunter has been honored by the Boone and Crockett Club for taking one of the highest-scoring caribou to be entered into the club’s record books in the past three years.

Doug Wendel of Horace was honored July 23 during Boone and Crockett 31st Big Game Awards celebration in Springfield, Mo.

Since 1947, the triennial Big Game Awards program has recognized the biggest heads, horns and antlers from North America to be accepted into the Boone and Crockett Club’s records from the previous three years. Wendel’s Central Canada barren ground caribou officially scored 351½ points by a panel of judges and ranks second for the 31st awards period. Hosted by Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s and Centennial Sponsor Federal Ammunition, the 31st Big Game Awards recognition events were held July 21-23, 2022, in Springfield at Johnny Morris’ Wonders of Wildlife National Museum & Aquarium.

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The Federal Duck Stamp, which sells for $25, raises approximately $40 million in sales each year. Funds from stamp sales support critical conservation to protect wetland habitats in the National Wildlife Refuge System.

“The Big Game Awards celebrations only happen every three years, and we are honored to host the sportsmen and women who have found such success in the field,” James F. Arnold, Boone and Crockett Club president, said in a statement. “Our congratulations to Doug for his magnificent caribou and even more so for his commitment to Fair Chase ethics and wildlife conservation.”

Based in Missoula, the Boone and Crockett Club began recording measurements of mature male specimens of big game species, taken in fair chase pursuit, in the early 1900s as a way to evaluate the health of the species. In 1947, the awards program was developed, and in 1950, the club adopted an equitable, objective, and consistent measurement system for the big game of North America. The records program continues to provide an avenue to collect biological, harvest, and location data on big game trophies based on the principle that the existence of mature, male specimens is an indicator of overall population and habitat health.

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The Big Game Awards is now hosted every three years to recognize the top animals within 38 categories that were accepted into the Boone and Crockett Club records program. The top entries between Jan. 1, 2019, and Dec. 31, 2021, were invited to have their trophy remeasured by a panel of judges who convened in April to validate the entry score that each trophy receives.

“The 31st Big Game Awards is a celebration of these hunters’ success – but it is really a celebration of our conservation accomplishments to have huntable populations of wildlife that continue to produce record book quality animals,” Arnold said.

Theodore Roosevelt founded the Boone and Crockett Club in 1887. More info: www.boone-crockett.org .

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