Goat Hunts Close in Idaho
Meeting in Boise on January 16-18, the Idaho Fish and Game Commission approved closing mountain goat hunts in Units 59 and 59A in the eastern side of the state.

Declining goat populations in those units caused the department to recommend the hunting closures. The closure will be done by the Fish and Game Director.

Trophy species manager Dale Toweill said mountain goats seem to be stable or in decline in most of Idaho. Hunting permits numbers have dropped steadily over more than a decade

Idaho has a fair amount of mountain goat habitat, mostly in the central portion of the state, but that habitat tends to be in a number of limited, scattered areas populated by small herds. Toweill noted that mountain goats seem to need larger herds for better reproduction.

Fish and Game has managed goats conservatively in recent years in an attempt to bring numbers up and because the difficult task of counting goats is only carried out in each area every five years.

Idaho has about 2,700 mountain goats. Just over 50 hunting permits were issued last year.

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