JACKSON HOLE, WYO – Earning the right to breed with a time-tested and brutal method of butting heads. Must be why males are referred to as “rams.”
From EcoTour Adventures, who caught this bighorn battle:
Though the prime season for viewing male dominance and courtship displays in the Tetons is late fall, it also occurs in the spring and to a lesser degree throughout the year. Rams instinctively butt heads to establish a hierarchy. Enlarged nasal cavities and the horns themselves help absorb the shock from blows, whose sound echoes across the landscape.
At around age 7, rams are large enough to maintain dominance within a herd and will actively court and mate with most females.