Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Alpine ibex

There were some glorious photos in the e-mail I received this morning. The accompanying information begged to be confirmed, but once I did I decided to share it...

The alpine ibex is a sure-footed member of the goat family that lives in a group and has a lifespan of 10-14 years. The female gives birth once a year, and the animals are such natural climbers that the offspring can follow their mothers up steep cliffs only a single day after birth. It is no surprise then - although visually stunning - that the taste of these herbivores for lichen and moss, plus the mineral salts that they lick off the stone, take them fearlessly across the 160' face of the Cingino dam in the Italian Alps. Rather magical, and that's what the superstitious thought as they gathered up ibex parts and poop for potions and cures. They were also hunted for trophies and almost became extinct in the 19th c. but for a game preserve set aside for royals by King Emmanuel II of Sardinia (1820-1878). All 4,000 existing alpine ibex are descended from this herd.


  1. The Alpine Ibex are amazing creatures, thanks for sharing.


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