Desert Bighorn Sheep
There are some very craggy, steep, rocky mountains in this whole area. Just the kind of terrain the desert bighorn sheep love. I always look for them when we are in this part of Arizona. The other day we went with our friends to a part of the Kofa wildlife refuge we had never seen before. It was a jeep, 4 wheeler trail and we went pretty far back in the mountains. Waaaaayyyy up high there was a mom and a small baby bighorn sheep. They were way to far away to photograph, so we watched them through a spotting scope and binoculars. The babies must be born this time of year so they are healthy and strong when the summer heat hits.
Another day, we did find these guys.
This was after I had followed them around, all over the mountains. They weren’t very worried about me, and eventually laid down.
When Al and I first saw them, there was just 2. I followed, and he went around a different way.
Soon the 2 met up with the other 2. This was amazing to watch. They nuzzled each other, play butted with their heads, and where obviously glad they were all together.
Eventually they started grazing again.
Another time, we found them in the evening. I climbed up to get closer for photos.
Again they were so close to each other, butting their heads, rubbing on each other. One even put his leg casually across the back of the other.
They moved off this ridge and started heading down. I cut across the mountain to see if I could spot them again. I came up over a small ridge, and there they were. Munching on a saguaro.
They looked at me as if to say, “How and why on earth are you here?”
They snorted at me a couple of times, then just kept on grazing.
Eventually they ran down the mountain, through the wash and up the other mountain.
I did get a few last parting shots of them on the ridge, before it got too dark. Then over they went.
Nothing gets my heart pumping more than photographing wildlife, and climbing all over mountains to do it.
These are such amazing animals. I felt very privileged to watch them interacting with each other like they were. What a tight family bond they must have. I just hope that they never get hunted or harassed by humans, what a shame that would be.