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Big Horn Sheep
Average size: 3 – 3.5 feet tall (at shoulder)
130 – 300 lbs
Average lifespan: 10 – 14 yrs (female)
9 – 12 yrs. (male)
(Sub-species are separated geographically)
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
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.
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.
While competing for females, two males can charge at each other at speeds of 30 mph!