Little Bighorn

Yesterday, I posted on some wonderful wildflowers of the Badlands NP. Today’s post, also from the Badlands, features a small group of Bighorn Sheep lambs (Ovis canadensis) that put on quite a show for us one day.

On our second day in the park, we rounded a corner and found some Bighorn Sheep ewes among the rock formations on the lefthand side of the road:


Bighorn Sheep ewe


After watching and photographing this group of ewes for a few minutes, I caught some motion out of the corner of my eye. Turning to our right, I saw a small group of 6 youngsters (lambs) as they played among the steep rocks. As they stood at the top of a ridge, I couldn’t resist grabbing an image of them with the beautiful Badlands in the backround:


Bighorn Sheep kids


Then, I zoomed in a bit to get a closer image of the youngsters:


Bighorn Sheep kids


You might have noticed that there were no adult sheep near the youngsters. There was a single ewe that was grazing on the same side of the road as the lambs, but was not very close by … guess this was the “Designated Babysitter” of the group!  Soon after the last image, I noticed one of the lambs was securely gripping another lamb … don’t know if they were just playing or if the one had a sudden sense of how high they were above the floor of the valley! But I’m guessing it was just playtime, as they seemed very adept at climbing the steep and rough surfaces:


Bighorn Sheep kids


Here is another shot that seems to point to playtime. Several times, the lambs would climb, and even run/jump along the steep surfaces!


Bighorn Sheep kids



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