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Mountain Goat

Additional Info

  • Order: Artiodactyla
  • Family: Bovidae
  • Subfamily: Caprinae
  • Genus: Oreamnos
  • Species: americanus
  • Members of the Family: Antelope, cattle, goats and sheep.
  • Conservation Status: Mountain goats are not threatened or endangered.
  • Geographic Range and Habitat: Mountain goats are native to southeastern Alaska, Washington, western Montana and Central Idaho. Animals have been introduced to parts of South Dakota, and Colorado.
  • Physical Description: Mountain goats have thick white coats, contrasted by dark black horns that curve slightly toward their backs as they grow. Their soft, spongy hooves allow them to climb steep, mountainside rocks. Males are typically larger than females.
  • Weight: 125 to 180lbs (50 to 80 kg) in the wild.
  • Length: 50 to 70 in (1.25 to 1.80 m)
  • Reproduction: Mountain goats breed once per year in late fall and early winter.
  • Gestation Period: 147 days
  • Number of Offspring: 1 to 3 kids
  • Birth Weight: Approximately 7 lbs
  • Time to Weaning: 3 to 4 months average
  • Age at Sexual or Reproductive Maturity: 2.5 years average
  • Average Lifespan (Wild): 12 years average
  • Average Lifespan (Captivity): 16 years average
  • Social Habits: Adult females dominate the hierarchy of the herd except during mating season. During the breeding season the lead male is in charge. Mountain goats dig shallow wallows in which they bed down during the night and take dirt baths during the day.
  • Behavior: Mountain goats spend most of the day browsing on leaves from low growing branches, bark, plant stems, and moss. They will also migrate to natural salt licks. Young goats tend to spend a great deal of time at play –challenging one another and creating their own hierarchy within the herd.
  • Food Habits: Mountain goats eat leaves, and when available, but also eat lichens and mosses.
  • Known Predators: Bears, wolves, coyotes, cougars, Canadian lynx, golden eagles, and humans. Cougars account for most the predation, as goats can easily evade bears and wolves in their steep, mountainous habitat. Eagles and lynx are responsible for juvenile mortality more than that of adult goats. Adult goats have been known to defend themselves from wolves successfully.
  • To Cite This Page: Stoffel V. 2010. "Oreamnos americanus" (On-line), Bearizona. Accessed Month day, year at http://www.bearizona.com
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