Sandoval Signpost


An independent monthly newspaper serving the community since 1988

Dave Harper

If you lose or find an animal in Placitas area, call the Animal Hotline at 867-6135. The Hotline is a nonprofit service run by Dave and January Harper to help reunite lost and found pets. Placing a Lost or Found in the Animal Hotline is a free service courtesy of the Signpost—we can sometimes even include a photo. Call Dave and January at 867-6135 or 263-2266 and leave a detailed message, or email the Animal Hotline at: (but call, too).


Dog: One-year-old small female Chihuahua-Terrier. “Lila” is very friendly. She weighs about five pounds, is white with some off-white, and has big ears like radars. She has no collar or chip and is not spayed. Lost November 9 from Algodones, off Old Highway 313. #4050 (See photo below.) 

Cat: Black long-haired older male, neutered. “Darko” is very friendly and was wearing a collar. He has no chip. Lost around October 1 from Pine Court in Ranchos de Placitas Subdivision in Placitas. #4051 (See photo below.) 


Cat: Young, black, medium hair, no collar. Seen October 5 in Placitas, off of Placitas Trails Road. Been hanging around about a month. #4048 (See photo below.)

Dogs: Three Akitas that are white with black faces. Seen October 28 in Cedar Creek, heading east toward Camino de Las Huertas, in Placitas. #4049


Animal News


Lalo’s pet prints:

Lalo loves to receive your pet and animal photos to print in the Signpost.
Email them to “Lalo” at:
Or mail prints to: Signpost, P. O. Box 889 Placitas, NM 87043

Hi Lalo, This is my father, Augie Lucero, with his rooster, “Romeo” and his puppy, “Barbie.” —Photo by Amy Davis

Chubby skunks come to call. —Photo by Todd Renneckar

On November 7 at 4:00 a.m., a big black bear came to visit us at Camino Tres Ritos in Placitas. I put up my trail camera and he came back at 8:00 p.m. on the same day!

James Cain, a wildlife and affiliate associate professor at New Mexico State University, is part of a team researching wildlife and vegetation responses to forage restoration treatments in the Jemez Mountains. Here he is shown fastening a GPS collar to a sedated black bear to track his movement.
Photo credit: —Mark Peyton

Professor leads wildlife effort in Jemez Mountains

~Kristie Garcia, NMSU News Service

Among the ponderosa pines in the Valles Caldera National Preserve, large herds of elk may be seen foraging on the grasses along the forest floor. Many areas in these Northern New Mexico Jemez Mountains have been through prescribed burns, or forest thins, to allow for a less dense canopy, so new grasses and shrubs may grow on the forest floor and wildfires can be less destructive.

These forest restoration treatments are part of the larger Southwest Jemez Collaborative Landscape Restoration Project that includes the Santa Fe National Forest and Valles Caldera National Preserve.

James Cain, a wildlife and affiliate associate professor at New Mexico State University, is leading a research team to monitor how certain mammals are responding to the forest thins and prescribed burns.

“My role in this project is to assess the responses of large mammals to these landscape scale forest-restoration treatments,” Cain said. “We’re specifically looking at how the vegetation responds to the thinning and prescribed burns and then how the herbivores respond to that vegetation. We’re looking at the responses of mule deer, elk, black bears, and mountain lions.”

Wildlife researchers—including Cain—have placed GPS collars on over fifty animals to record their location at regular intervals.

“We usually have ten-to-twenty bears, about fifty elk, and about ten or 15 mule deer with GPS collars at any given time,” he said. “This allows us to see where they’re moving throughout the landscape, which areas they’re using, and whether they’re using the treated areas. If they are using the treated areas, one of the main things we are interested in is how long it takes from when an area is thinned to when it actually becomes an area that’s utilized by deer, elk, and black bears.”

NMSU received a $100,000 research grant from the U.S. Forest Service and National Park Service to help with the larger animal study.

So far, three NMSU wildlife sciences graduate students have worked with Cain on the project. Tanya Roerick, who received a master’s degree in the summer, studied Mule Deer. Sarah Kindschuh and Susan Bard have both researched black bears. Kindschuh received her master’s degree in 2015, and Bard is currently pursing her master’s degree. Caleb Robers, who received a master’s degree in wildlife from Texas Tech University, helped with the project as well, focusing on elk.
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