Many hunters long to add the impressive horns of the Catalina Goat to their trophy collection at home. What they don’t realize is that they can do Catalina Goat trophy hunts in Texas. But before you can have a successful hunt, you first need to understand everything you can about your prey.
Origin of Catalina Goats
In the 1800s Spanish missionaries landed on Santa Catalina Island, just off the coast of San Diego, California. They landed there to establish a Catholic mission and bring Christianity to the indigenous peoples of North America. They brought goats with them that, absent any natural predators on the island, reproduced very quickly. While these goats were a valuable source of food for the missionaries, today they are now considered an invasive species whose overgrazing threatens to wipe out native species of plants and animals. For this reason conservation efforts have begun to bring their population on the island down to more manageable numbers.
The Catalina goat may have originated in Spain but thanks to how hardy this animal is, it can now be found across most of North America.
Like most other breeds of goat, the Catalina goat has a thick, wiry coat that comes in a wide range of colors. Their coats come in nearly every shade of black, white, brown, or reddish-brown. While their coats typically are predominantly one color or another, they do often have small patches or even large spots. Does and bucks both have beards and stand between 4 and sometimes more than 5 feet tall. Bucks are fairly large and weigh somewhere in the range of 130-275 lbs. The female Catalina goat is significantly smaller, usually only weighing in around 80 lbs.
One of the main reasons that the Catalina goat is such a popular trophy hunt, especially in Texas, is their impressively wide horns. While the does do not typically have horns, it is not usual for a female Catalina goat to have short, curved horns measuring 4-6 inches. These horns, however, are dwarfed by their male counterparts. Curling away from the top of its head, a buck’s corkscrew horns spread straight out to the sides, spanning anywhere from 30-40 inches from tip to tip. The largest spread on record measured in at a stunning 53 inches.
Catalina Goat Habitat
Like their ancestors from Spain, Catalina goats are accustomed to living in dry, rocky or mountainous terrain. As one might expect from a goat, they are also skillful climbers and can quickly disappear in rocky terrain to avoid predators. The punishing terrain and their ability to disappear quickly in the rocks and vegetation make the Catalina goat not only challenging but also a very rewarding animal to hunt. At Squaw Mountain Ranch we have many oak canyons that provide plenty of places for our goats, as well as our many other trophy animals such as elk, whitetail deer, and red stag, to lead you on a fair chase hunting experience.
Catalina goats are hardy animals and require very little water to survive. This means they can sustain themselves on a wide variety of grasses and leaves regardless of if they are lush or dry. The prairie and grasslands on our property here at Squaw Mountain Ranch provide plenty of forage for our goats, ensuring your Catalina goat trophy will be one you are proud to have on display.
The Catalina goat does not have a mating season. They breed as the females go into heat. A doe’s estrous cycle lasts 18 to 24 days with their heat lasting anywhere from 12 to 36 hours. A doe in heat will begin ‘flagging’ the bucks; wagging her tail rapidly to indicate to the males that she is willing to mate. A flagging doe will often attract more than one buck. While goats tend to establish a breeding hierarchy, they are also highly competitive. If a doe attracts multiple males it is common for them to engage in posturing and even fighting to establish which buck has the right to mate with her. Once pregnant, a doe will remain pregnant for around 5 months and can give birth to 1-3 kids per pregnancy.
Thanks to how quickly and how often they reproduce, there are no seasonal restrictions on Catalina goat trophy hunting in Texas. The fact that they are available year-round also means you do not need to plan your trip months in advance as might be the case with some of the other exotic hunting experiences we offer.
Hunting Tips for Successful Catalina Goat Trophy Hunts in Texas
Catalina goats like to hang out in rocky outcroppings, canyons, and cliffsides. This rough terrain can be difficult to navigate so hunters often must pursue their quarry on foot. They also have a good sense of smell which can tip them off to the presence of people, even if they are not able to see you. While Catalina Goats are not particularly fast, they are notoriously easy to spook and can disappear into the rocks in a matter of seconds. Hunters will need to be especially quick and alert if they hope to bag their goat before it climbs out of sight.
The difficulty of tracking and taking down a trophy quality Catalina goat is a big part of what makes them such a popular choice among trophy hunters. At Squaw Mountain Ranch we can accommodate both new and experienced hunters. Our expert hunting guides will help you plan your Catalina goat trophy hunt in Texas and tailor the hunt to your level of experience and preferences. Due to where they like to spend their time, spot and stalk is the preferred hunting technique when hunting Catalina goats but hunters can choose from a variety of other hunting techniques as well.
Once hunters choose their technique they can then decide their method of take-down. While bow, pistol, rifle, and black powder hunts are all options at Squaw Mountain Ranch; due to the immense size of the Catalina Goat’s horns, a larger weapon is sometimes needed to ensure a clean take-down.