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Grand Teton NP Halts Mountain Goat Eradication Effort

GRAND TETON NATIONAL PARK, Wyo. (AP) – Grand Teton National Park has suspended a program to shoot mountain goats from a helicopter as part of a plan to eradicate the non-native species from the park, where they pose a threat to the native bighorn sheep.

The move came after Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon criticized the program, calling it a “farce” – which led Interior Secretary David Bernhardt to intervene and tell Grand Teton officials to halt the effort.

Park spokeswoman Denise Germann says the shooters did go up on Friday, but she doesn’t know how many goats were killed.

Grand Teton officials say the goats compete with the bighorn for food and habitat, but more importantly can also spread fatal diseases.