Sierra Nevada Ecosystem

Sierra Nevada Ecosystem

The Sierra Nevada Bighorn Sheep was once abundant in its namesake mountains. Well adapted to climbing steep terrain where it can seek cover from predators like coyotes, golden eagles, and cougars, this unique subspecies of bighorn sheep is a denizen of the high country, moving to lower elevations only in the wintertime to feed. By the early 20th century the animal's numbers were already dropping, and the population crashed in the 1980s when it began avoiding its winter range. After hitting a low of about 100 individuals, the Sierra Nevada Bighorn was listed as an endangered species in 2000. Read more.

Sierra Nevada bighorn sheep (Ovis canadensis sierrae)