Volunteers count mountain goats at Mount Rushmore - KOTA Territory News

Volunteers count mountain goats at Mount Rushmore

Furry, four–legged friends joined tourists to check out the famous faces at Mount Rushmore National Memorial over the weekend.

Members of the Rocky Mountain Goat Alliance joined about 30 volunteers to count the number of goats in the Black Hills.

Peter Muennich, founder and president of the group, said last year goats were transplanted to the hills from Utah. He says the release benefited the goat population greatly.

"Back in the 1920's, half a dozen British Columbian mountain goats broke out of a petting zoo in Custer State Park. Flash forward 50 years, you have a couple hundred goats in the Black Hills. That lack of diversity comes with a downside. So the two transplants in the last decade have both really helped out to diversify the blood lines," Muennich said.

Muennich said the goat population currently stands at between 110 and 130. He said he hopes that number will increase to 150.

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