San Clemente Island Goats
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About San Clemente Island GoatsAbout San Clemente Island Goats



San Clemente Island Goats arernderived from feral goats isolated on San Clemente Island, one of the ChannelrnIslands off the coast of California. They are thought tornbe descended from goats brought to the island by Spanish missionaries andrnsettlers; breeds such as the La Blanca Celtiboras, the La CastellanarnExtremenas, and later the more common dairy and meat goats of Spain, thernMalaguenas and Murcianas.

The U.S. Navy becamernresponsible for the island in 1934. Hunting and trapping were allowed, but inrn1972, when a survey concluded that there were 11,000 goats on the island, arnsystematic removal program was begun. By 1980 an estimated 4,000 goats still remainedrnon the island.

The Navy then proposed arnshooting program to be conducted from helicopters, but it was blocked in courtrnby an animal welfare group, the Fund for Animals. This group used helicoptersrnand nets to capture the goats, then took them off the island and found homesrnfor them across the country. Practically all the goats were removed from thernisland in this manner.

San Clemente goats arernrelatively small, close to the maximum standard for dwarf breeds. They are arnmeat breed, though uncommonly fine-boned and deer-like. They are horned in bothrnsexes. Although the island population once exhibited a wide range of colors andrncolor markings, the goats are now mostly red or tan with black markings.


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