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FSU Tag Line
 

Big Horn Sheep

Ovis canadensisbh

 

 

Average size: 3 – 3.5 feet tall (at shoulder)

                        130 – 300 lbs

Average lifespan: 10 – 14 yrs (female)

                              9 – 12 yrs. (male)

Range/distribution Map

(Sub-species are separated geographically)

 

Habitat description:

Bighorn sheep generally inhabit alpine meadows, grassy mountain slopes and foothill country near rugged, rocky cliffs and bluffs.  These sheep are well adapted for climbing steep slopes

Behavior:

Both sexes rely heavily on low laying vegetation as their diet, as well as, mineral deposits or “salt licks” in preparation for winter.  Males tend to stop to eat, while females (in response to predation) tend to graze, which means to walk and eat.

 Conservation Status

The Bighorn Sheep population has fluctuated over America’s history.  These sheep are very susceptible to diseases from domestic sheep.  Because of the efforts of conservationists, this animal is listed as a least concern.

Fun Facts

While competing for females, two males can charge at each other at speeds of 30 mph!