Aggressive goats close trail in Olympic National Forest

I think this is interesting because we frequently see mountain goats in Colorado but they don’t seem to have become aggressive. Here’s the link.

HOODSPORT, Wash. – Olympic National Forest has closed a trail near Hoodsport for two weeks because of aggressive mountain goats.

Forest officials say there were several encounters this week with aggressive goats on the Mount Ellinor Trail, 18 miles northwest of Hoodsport.

The trail will be monitored, but there are no plans now to kill the animals.

“Nobody has been hurt by the goats. But a number of people have felt threatened,” said Stephanie Neil, recreation manager for the Hood Canal Ranger District of Olympic National Forest. She told the Peninsula Daily News that rangers have heard a number of reports over the past two weeks.

She said Tuesday that rangers will re-evaluate the closures in about two weeks.

“We want to keep the closure as short as possible, but we also want people to be safe,” Neil said.

Wildlife biologist Kurt Aluzas said the goats may be on the trails because of this year’s deep snowpack. Goats are also drawn to hiking trails seeking salt, and nanny goats may be aggressive while protecting their young.

Violating the closure order could bring a maximum penalty of a $5,000 fine and six months in jail.

4 thoughts on “Aggressive goats close trail in Olympic National Forest”

  1. These goats are a relatively recent introduced species. Do they add or subtract from the “biodiversity” of the Olympics? And, unlike barred hoot owls, they didn’t arrive on their own terms — they were purposefully planted here. Scotch broom is another big invasive problem in western Washington caused by the introduction of exotics. How are these introductions affecting Wilderness goals?

    (Several years ago I wrote an article about the USFS using sheep to control weeds in conifer plantations. Title: “The Forest Service Takes a Ewe Turn.”)


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