Scotland's Wild Goats

The Scottish Highlands is a truly majestic place with endless miles of nothing but nature at its best, a place where you can relax your busy city mind and simply feel connected to Mother Nature around you. The Highlands is also home to a number of wonderfully diverse species, from birds of prey and land animals to sealife on the coasts.

goatsOne of those is the Feral Goat, a descendant of the domestic goat, now a truly wild animal. They usually roam the hills in small herds and mate in the Autumn. They are quite timid creatures and usually walk off if you are lucky enough to approach them. These magnificent animals are a reminder of the area's turbulent past, as they descend from the livestock abandoned by Highlanders during the turbulent Highland clearances.

They were first introduced in these lands around 5000 years ago by Neolithic farmers, and used as farmyard animals. Nowadays, they are widely distributed but often quite difficult to spot because of the way their coats have bred back to dark colours and their preference for grazing on steep and broken craggy hill ground.

Some of the best spots to see them are at the wild goat park in Galloway Forest Park, Rum National Nature Reserve, Creag Dubh near Newtonmore, South Lochness-side, Ardgour, Mull, Ardnamurchan, North Morar, Strathfarrar and Dundonell, Kerrera off Oban, the Oa on Islay and Colonsay.