North Africa in New Mexico

Barbary sheep run wild in the forest north of Vera Cruz Mountain Ranch. Also known as the aoudad, the Barbary is a horned sheep native to North Africa. They’re still located in very isolated mountainous areas in North Africa, but it was introduced to the United States in the early 1900s, at first only raised in zoos and private sanctuaries. In 1950, the first animals were released into the wild, and they settled in to New Mexico. More were released in Texas around 1957, where they continue to thrive. These animals are indigenous to dry mountain ranges, usually deep in the desert. They are extremely agile, jumping from stone to stone and climbing steep inclines.


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