Grand Teton National Park has approved a plan to remove mountain goats (Oreamnos americanus) from the Teton Range. According to the plan announced on Tuesday, the goats, which are not native to the range, will be removed using lethal and nonlethal means. The removal is intended to protect an isolated population of about 100 bighorn sheep (Ovis canadensis), which face competition and disease threats from the goats. The goats migrated to the Teton Range after being introduced to the nearby Snake River Range to create hunting opportunities. The final plan provides for qualified volunteers to lethally remove the mountain goats and for relocating captured goats to other areas. Removal efforts are slated to begin this winter. Officials worry in a few years, the population will become unmanageable.
Read more in the Idaho Falls Post Register here.