State Animal

The Rocky Mountain Bighorn Sheep, Ovis canadensis, was adopted as the official state animal on May 1, 1961 by an act of the General Assembly. The Rocky Mountain Bighorn Sheep is found only in the Rockies, usually above timberline in rugged mountainous areas. The male sheep is three to three and a half feet tall at the shoulder and weighs up to three hundred pounds, while the female is slightly smaller. These large animals are known for their agility and perfect sense of balance. The bighorn sheep was named for its massive horns which curve backward from the forehead, down, then forward. On the ram the horns can be as much as fifty inches in length. It is unlawful to pursue, take, hunt, wound, or kill the Rocky Mountain Bighorn Sheep except as provided by law.

Citation: Senate Bill 294, 1961; Colorado Revised Statute 24-80-911.