Wanna Know What A Guzzler Is?

Although this request for attention and assistance is usually made to Nevada big game hunters by the Department of Wildlife, it’s something any of us could help with … the monitoring of the state’s wildlife water developments, more commonly known as ‘guzzlers’ and reporting in which ones are in need of repair.

Guzzlers are structures built to provide an additional source of water for all types of wildlife and they collect all precipitation which lands on a collection apron and store it in tanks, which is then available at a drinker that can be accessed by wildlife.

More than 1,700 guzzlers exist in Nevada and so I went to the NDOW office in Henderson to see if any are located in or around the outskirts of Boulder City … there are! I could have purchased a massive $50 map book to get the locations, but I didn’t think it was all that vital that I include that, so you can just take my word for it and I’m not out 50 bucks.

I DID find an awesome video from NDOW that I’ve included below for you – it’s really interesting and will show you what guzzlers look like for both large and small animals. And I’ve pulled some additional text (from their YouTube page) about the repair and maintenance challenges … it’s below the video for ya. Enjoy!

By their very nature, most guzzlers are not exactly in easy to reach locations. Often the guzzlers can be found on mountain tops or in canyons and are often located away from roads. Building them is a monumental task that requires Nevada Department of Wildlife (NDOW) biologists working in coordination with sportsmen’s groups and a team of volunteers. But what do you do when a guzzler gets damaged or broken?

“Even though some of the guzzlers in the state aren’t necessarily under NDOW’s ownership and were initially built by other agencies such as BLM (Bureau of Land Management) and the US Forest Service, we have taken on the responsibility for maintenance of their units as well,” said Clint Garret, Habitat biologist for NDOW. “Every year we try assess 300-600 guzzlers to see if they’re dysfunctional in any way. Some are so remote, NDOW is forced to use a helicopter to get to some of the guzzlers to assess their condition.”

The task of checking and repairing up to 600 guzzlers each year is tough enough, but in 2013 NDOW staff were additionally charged with placing signage on all of the 1,700 plus water developments to assist the public in reporting any observed damage.

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