Goat conflicts...
May 30, 2013 | 1324 views | 0 0 comments | 14 14 recommendations | email to a friend | print
I am horribly conflicted by the proposal to introduce mountain goats to the La Sals. I’ve been enjoying my encounters with mountain goats introduced to Ogden’s portion of the Wasatch Range.

But, introducing these beautiful animals to the La Sals would probably be terminal for the endemic rayless daisy, Erigeron mancus, which grows nowhere on the planet but the La Sals above treeline, exactly where the goats would be making their home. There’s also a rare rock jasmine, Androsace chamaejasme, which is even more uncommon in the La Sals’ tundra but also grows (though not in abundance) on other western mountain ranges. 

Most of the mountain goat introductions in Utah over the last few decades have come from Olympic National Park, where the non-native Beasts-the-Color-of-Winter are being eliminated for the very reason that their hunger has driven several of the park’s endemic plants to the brink of extinction. 

—José Knighton

Ogden, Utah

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