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Bighorn Sheep

Bighorn Sheep ewe gets her closeup

Most of the Bighorn I have seen this season so far look pretty rough as they shed their winter coats and their summer coats begin to fill in. This pretty lady though looked quite nice and almost seemed to revel in having her picture taken. Best of all, she came right by my truck so I was able to stay nice and warm which was welcome after spending a couple of hours exposed to temperatures in the mid-30s and nasty wind at 14,000+ foot altitude. 😉

A Bighorn Sheep ewe pauses to pose for pictures at the top of Mount Evans in Colorado. (© Tony’s Takes)

A Bighorn Sheep ewe pauses to pose for pictures at the top of Mount Evans in Colorado. (© Tony’s Takes)

Little Bighorn keeps watch from on high

Bighorn Sheep lambs may not be all that big but they are nearly as adept at climbing as the adults. The rugged landscape of Colorado’s foothills is a great place for the young ones to learn and while a human would struggle, the lambs scale the rocks and steep slopes with ease. This young ram was more interested in playing with some of the other young members of the herd but did stop to check out the photographers gathered below.

Found across much of western North America, Bighorn Sheep are adept mountain climbers, best known for the adult male ram’s monstrous horns. While the animals are social, rams and ewes typically only meet during mating season. Diseases from European livestock and overhunting had caused the animal’s population to drop precipitously by the early 1900s. Thankfully #conservation efforts have been successful in helping the sheep rebound since then.

A curious Bighorn Sheep lamb keeps watch from the side of a mountain.  (© Tony’s Takes)

A curious Bighorn Sheep lamb keeps watch from the side of a mountain. (© Tony’s Takes)

Bighorn Sheep ram gets caught with its mouth full

My kids used to eat their spaghetti a lot like this guy was eating his grass. 😉

Taken this past November, this young ram was one of about a dozen Bighorns hanging out along the South Platte River in Waterton Canyon southwest of Denver. There is a lot of recreational traffic in the canyon so the herd there is very used to people allowing you get up close and personal with them.

Found across much of western North America, Bighorn Sheep are adept mountain climbers, best known for the adult male ram’s monstrous horns. While the animals are social, rams and ewes typically only meet during mating season. Diseases from European livestock and overhunting had caused the animal’s population to drop precipitously by the early 1900s. Thankfully conservation efforts have been successful in helping the sheep rebound since then.

A Bighorn Sheep munches on grass in Waterton Cayon. (© Tony’s Takes)

A Bighorn Sheep munches on grass in Waterton Cayon. (© Tony’s Takes)

Bighorn Sheep ram gets its closeup

An image of one of the senior members of a herd that hangs out in a canyon southwest of Denver. These guys are very accessible (if you don’t mind walking or biking a few miles) and always seem willing to have their picture taken. Those well-worn horns on this ram no doubt tell a story of a life in the rugged Front Range foothills. They have seen countless battles and show the wear and tear of the times it has fended off challengers.

The Bighorn Sheep is the Centennial State’s official animal and to me that is quite fitting. Just like the terrain and many of its people, these animals are very rugged, strong and tough. The animal is found in many places in the state’s high country.

A Bighorn Sheep ram poses up close and personal near Denver, Colorado. (© Tony’s Takes)

A Bighorn Sheep ram poses up close and personal near Denver, Colorado. (© Tony’s Takes)

Young Bighorn Ram struts his stuff

Even though this guy was a bit too young to compete with the big guys, he wasn’t shy about showing off to the photographers. Taken back in November in Waterton Canyon, Colorado during the annual rut, there wasn’t a lot of real action taking place when I was there. That didn’t make visiting with these creatures any less fun though.

The Bighorn Sheep at this location are quite accustomed to people so you are able to get in close proximity and truly begin to appreciate their power and majesty. Found across much of western North America, Bighorn Sheep are adept mountain climbers, best known for the adult male ram’s monstrous horns. While the animals are social, rams and ewes typically only meet during mating season.

A young Bighorn Sheep ram seems to be posing for its picture in Colorado. (© Tony’s Takes)

A young Bighorn Sheep ram seems to be posing for its picture in Colorado. (© Tony’s Takes)

Curious little Bighorn

So darned cute! This young one was as interested in me as I was in it last month in Waterton Canyon southwest of Denver. This image gives you a good look at the kind of terrain these awesome animals call home. It is amazing how adept they are at navigating the rocks and cliffs, even at a young age.

The Bighorn Sheep is the Centennial State’s official animal and to me that is quite fitting. Just like the terrain and many of its people, these animals are very rugged, strong and tough. The animal is found in many places in the state’s high country.

Diseases from European livestock and overhunting had caused the animal’s population to drop precipitously by the early 1900s. Thankfully conservation efforts have been successful in helping the sheep rebound since then.

A Bighorn Sheep lamb keeps watch from the side of a cliff southwest of Denver, Colorado. (© Tony’s Takes)

A Bighorn Sheep lamb keeps watch from the side of a cliff southwest of Denver, Colorado. (© Tony’s Takes)

Portrait of a Bighorn ram

One of the senior members of a herd of these powerful creatures southwest of Denver. You can just tell from those worn, beaten and cracked horns that this big guy has seen his share of battles and I would bet won most of them.

The Bighorn Sheep is the Centennial State’s official animal and to me that is quite fitting. Just like the terrain and many of its people, these animals are very rugged, strong and tough. The animal is found in many places in the state’s high country.

Diseases from European livestock and overhunting had caused the animal’s population to drop precipitously by the early 1900s. Thankfully conservation efforts have been successful in helping the sheep rebound since then.

Closeup portrait of a Bighorn Sheep ram. (© Tony’s Takes)

Closeup portrait of a Bighorn Sheep ram. (© Tony’s Takes)

Bighorn Ram casts a wary eye at the photographer

This young ram was certainly keeping close watch on me as he walked by. I was taking pictures of him and about a dozen others in a herd in the foothills southwest of Denver as they gathered along the road. There wasn’t much action that day but plenty of opportunity to snap pics of these cool dudes. This particular one was moving around the perimeter of the herd and passed right nearby allowing me to get this close up and allowing it to get a good look at the guy with the camera. 😉

Found across much of western North America, Bighorn Sheep are adept mountain climbers, best known for the male #ram’s monstrous horns. This particular ram was only a couple of years old so his horns were not overly impressive. While the animals are social, rams and ewes typically only meet during mating season.

A Bighorn Sheep ram keeps an eye on the photographer.  (© Tony’s Takes)

A Bighorn Sheep ram keeps an eye on the photographer. (© Tony’s Takes)

Someday, young one. Someday.

This was a really cute, fun scene to watch this past weekend. A young Bighorn Sheep ram puts his head down and tests one of his elders. Certainly the big guy could have flattened the juvenile if he wanted and instead simply put his head down as well and nudged ‘junior’ back a bit.

Mating season for Bighorn is gearing up and I had hoped to get the opportunity to see and photograph some of the big guys clashing. Unfortunately that wasn’t to be as this was the only big ram in the area at the time. I will have to give it a shot again, perhaps this weekend.

The Bighorn Sheep is the Centennial State’s official animal and to me that is quite fitting. Just like the terrain and many of its people, these animals are very rugged, strong and tough. The animal is found in many places in the state’s high country. Diseases from European livestock and overhunting had caused the animal’s population to drop precipitously by the early 1900s. Thankfully conservation efforts have been successful in helping the sheep rebound since then.

A young Bighorn Sheep ram tests his strength against a far more senior ram.  (© Tony’s Takes)

A young Bighorn Sheep ram tests his strength against a far more senior ram. (© Tony’s Takes)

Bighorn Sheep lambs enjoy the spotlight

A picture for #TBT to June when I was in Jasper National Park in Alberta, Canada.

We had enjoyed a very relaxing morning at Miette Hot Springs and were on our way back to camp when we happened across this pair of little ones as well as eight ewes. The adults were quite comfortable with my family and another watching them and paid us little attention. The young ones though seemed fascinated by all the attention and put on quite a show of bounding around the side of the mountain then stopping and seeming to look to make sure we were watching.

Found across much of western North America, Bighorn Sheep are adept mountain climbers, best known for the male ram’s monstrous horns. While the animals are social, rams and ewes typically only meet during mating season. The young are kept on high ledges to help protect them from predators.

A pair of Bighorn Sheep lambs seems to enjoy the spotlight as they hang out in Jasper National Park, Canada.  (© Tony’s Takes)

A pair of Bighorn Sheep lambs seems to enjoy the spotlight as they hang out in Jasper National Park, Canada. (© Tony’s Takes)