- Associated Press - Thursday, March 27, 2014

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) - The New Mexico Game and Fish Department will be giving refunds to those who apply but fail to draw licenses to hunt bighorn sheep, oryx or ibex this coming season.

The department’s announcement is in response to a federal court ruling this week that cleared the way for the state to give preference to residents when allocating licenses for the three species.

For decades, an injunction had prevented the state from applying the preferential quotas. That gave nonresident hunters equal odds at winning a chance to hunt bighorn sheep, oryx and ibex.

Now, 84 percent of the licenses will go to resident hunters.

The court ruling has also prompted the department to delay this year’s drawing by about one week. Drawing results will be available no later than April 30.

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