Friends of Kootenay Blog

Access stories and photos about the natural and human history of Kootenay National Park and Columbia Valley Includes highlights about the Friends of Kootenay National Park activities and programs.


Head Banger

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This spetcular video of the Bighorn Sheep Rut was taken by Deborah Griffith Nov. 7, 2012

The Bighorn Sheep rut begins in November. Typically, fights occur only between closely matched rams; if one has an inferior set of horns, he generally gives way to his adversary without a fight or with only a token tussle. However, when two evenly matched rams tangle, like the ones Deborah Griffith videoed near the Kootenay National Park office in Radium Hot Springs, a terrific and lengthy contest may ensue.

After some initial inspection, the rams will start to walk away, but suddenly will wheel about at a distance of perhaps 40 feet and race toward each other on their hind feet, lunging forward in perfect synchrony to meet head on. With a combined speed of 50 to 70 miles per hour and an estimated force of 2,400 pounds, It is quite the sight to witness and hear.

If you would like to learn more about Bighorn Sheep search the Friends of Kootenay Research database and browse over 50 reports on Bighorn Sheep.