Are there two different sheep? The markings on the horns, and the end of the horns look different. One fellow looks a little more ragged than the other, as thought he’s been putting those horns to use!
These were four in a herd of about 40 animals . There were more large rams present than I have ever seen before in one herd, and they had been fighting for dominance, as can be seen by the “brooms” at the ends of their horns. One even had a torn place on his face.
All of the larger rams in the herd had seen battle recently. There is a large divot out of the right horn of the one in the second photo and the tip of the horn of the one in the third has really been torn up. When they butt, it is with awesome force.
Several years ago I was hiking just a few miles from where these were and I caught sight of a huge old ram just climbing out of sight on the mountainside above me about 500 yards away. I bet some of these were from his lineage.
I think they could give you a ride! I’ve seen them in their dominance contests and their power and durability are awesome. I’ve been very close to them dozens of times and they have never viewed me as any kind of threat. Funny though, I’ve also seen big rams that would spook when they detected me at 500 yards.
Your photographs are amazing. The details in your mountain goat/ram are truly impressive. He is a handsome creature. Would you mind if I nabbed a screenshot to use in my blog, linking back to your blog? I might like to insert orples into other people’s work, and I am considering publishing a coffee table book at some point in time, featuring ‘Orple Adventures’ when I’ve collected enough shots, using my, and other people’s photos, to compile a book. Anyone whose photos I use would be given credit for their work. Sonel, whom you may be familiar with, has given me permission to use some of her Photographs, already, as you will soon see. In the meantime, thanks for the share. 🙂
I’m glad that you enjoyed seeing the Bighorns! No, I don’t mind at all if you use an image. If you click on any of the photos that I post, it will take you to that image on Flickr and they make it easy to download or use a photo. All of my photos there are open to public viewing.
Hi Montucky, Stupendously great pictures of the Rocky Mountain Bighorn Sheep! I never have seen any but I have seen their desert cousins in the Anzo Borrego State Park in California near Palm Springs. Have a really nice day today!
Thanks! The light was fading fast and I was afraid that they wouldn’t be clear with a slow shutter but I’m pleased at how they turned out. The Bighorns have not been doing well here the past year. They are susceptible to pneumonia that they contract from domestic sheep and they have no resistance to it. Dozens have died in the last couple of years in the local area.
Unfortunately the political climate here at the moment is definitely anti-environment. The new Montana Senator and Representative are both outspoken advocates of exploiting all of the National Forests and, while giving lip service to sportsmen and wildlife, are Hell bent on doing great damage to the ecosystem.
I was lucky to get that close. The big rams were more concerned with romance than anything else, and they had been fighting a lot. Their horns had big divots on them and the ends were pretty “broomed” out. THe whole herd looked to be in excellent condition though and ready for winter, fat with beautiful winter coats.