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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

August 4, 2014 at 12:21 PM

Stop demonizing mountain goats, increase public awareness instead

One of some 300 mountain goats in Olympic National Park faces a photographer on the Switchback Trail near Port Angeles. (Diane Urbani de la Paz / The Associated Press, 2008)

The recent article by AP reporter Phuong Lee about the National Park Service reviewing its goat policy discussed the fatal and tragic attack on the hiker trying to protect his wife and friend [“Olympic National Park takes on mountain goats,” Local News, July 21]. The article didn’t mention that Robert Boardman valiantly tried to shoo the animal away.

It was mentioned that the goat was later shot and that a necropsy found that the male goat was healthy. The author did not mention that “Klahhane Billy” was also found to be in rut during mating season. Male mountain goats are not usually territorial but become so during the fall mating season from about November through December.

Although the Boardman incident was unfortunate, rather than demonize mountain goats the National Park Service should increase public awareness so visitors are better prepared to enter the wilderness and wildlife habitat.

Robert Meyer, Seattle

Comments | More in animals | Topics: mountain goats, National Park Service, Olympic National Park

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