Mountain Goat for Kids
Description: The squarish Mountain Goat is entirely white or light cream in color. It has a narrow head with two small, black horns that reach lengths of 10-12 inches. Mountain Goats have shaggy crests of hair under the throat and chin. Mountain Goats weigh between 150 and 300 pounds and can reach heights of three to four feet. Male and female Mountain Goats are nearly impossible to tell apart. The Mountain Goat is perfectly adapted to life on rocky cliffs. It is extremely agile and has cushioned grips on its hooves that prevent slipping. Mountain goats are frequently observed with missing teeth or wounds, presumably from accidents that occur when they fall from cliff edges. Mountain Goats live 12-15 years.
Habitat/Range: Mountain Goats inhabit rocky cliffs and high mountains above timberline. This preference is probably an evolutionary response to predator avoidance. In some areas, they are the only animals to be found. Mountain Goats range throughout the Rocky Mountain west. Highest densities occur in British Columbia.
Diet: Mountain Goats are voracious eaters and consume alpine grasses and leaves, as well as flowers from any trees and shrubs.
Reproduction/Young: Mountain Goats breed in November and December. Males may wander considerable distances in search of females willing to mate. Males may batter each other for mating rights with females. Kids “baby goats” are born after a gestation period of 150 days in May or June. Occasionally, twins are born.