Blue Mountains Forest Plan Revision - Packgoats
The meeting is only about pack goats. It's on the announcement I posted way at the bottom.

I just received this email update about the meeting It's earlier than originally was set.

Tues., Nov. 10, 2015
11 a.m. - 3 p.m.
(doors open at 10:30)
Technical Pack Goat Meeting
Blue Mtns. National Forests
Pendleton Convention Center
1601 Westgate
Pendleton, Oregon 97801
Goatberries Happen!
I took a vacation day, and hope to drive down with Curtis.
Tonight Curtis King, Kirk Nebeker and I are getting together to have a meeting before attending the FS meeting in Pendleton next Tuesday which is strictly about packgoat access.

Nancy Clough, Curtis, Kirk, Larry Robinson and I are the only people I know of who will be attending this extremely important meeting.  Please, please - attend if you can.

Here is a link to the NAPgA Best Management Practices which will be discussed as part of this meeting.
Goatberries Happen!
So wish I could join you guys. But my new job doesnt give sick / leave days easily and I have used up most of my pull getting some hunting days and mama's surgery days off.
Pack Goat Prospects For Sale.

S.E. Washington (Benton City)
The attached Document is a PDF provided by the forest service in 2012. It is titled "RECOMMENDATIONS FOR
Domestic Sheep and Goat Management in Wild Sheep Habitat"
It has been presented to this group before. We have new members that may want to familiarize themselves with it.
The meeting with the FS re: packgoats is tomorrow (10th) in Pendleton, OR. Larry Robinson, Curtis King, Kirk Nebeker, Nancy Clouh, Donna Semasko and I will be attending. Wish us luck!
Goatberries Happen!
Those of us who attended the Blue Mountain Forest Service meeting got the opportunity to listen to Dr Thomas Besser from the College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of WA. Here are a couple of excerpts from his bio on the university website at

"My principal research focus is the epidemiology of zoonotic bacterial agents in their domestic animal reservoirs. In
addition, I have recently been working on the etiology of bighorn sheep pneumonia"

"Recently, I’ve begun working on a very different problem associated with cross-species transmission of pathogenic bacteria: epizootic pneumonia of bighorn sheep. This disease is strongly associated with Mycoplasma ovipneumoniae: North American wild sheep populations are normally free of this pathogen, but when infected are very susceptible to severe pneumonia that spreads through the population. For more information see:"

Attached is a brief summary of his finding. The pathogen noted above is nick named MOVI. The study will be published in a few months. My understanding of his presentation is there is a goat specie specific MOVI strain of this pathogen and another MOVI strain associated with domestic sheep specie. Both MOVI strains are deadly to big horn sheep. It is an anaerobic pathogen (does not like oxygen) which has made it harder to discover. MOVI is associated with all recorded big horn sheep die offs. 
The orginal big horn sheep die off about 20 years ago in Hell's Canyon was caused by the domestic sheep strain of MOVI. Please see the attachment here regarding another die off during the summer of 2014 involving these big horn sheep. This recent die off was caused by the goat strain of MOVI (this is known by the DNA of the pathogen).
This pathogen is goat and sheep specified and is not found in other animals. 
It is not common in "small herds". 
It is not harmful to our domestic animals.
It does not survive long without a host animal but will move within a herd. 
It is not known how far it can travel with a cough or sneeze but it is not miles, no safe distance is established.
It is not treatable as yet.
We can test our goats at WADDL. $40 for the blood test looking for antibodies that confirm exposure or a $10 nasal swab that will assess active MOVI. 
This is my interpretation of the information. I would encourage everyone who is interested to look at what data we have available to us. Dr Foreyt's studies are mentioned in the "discussion" section of the one published study I found on MOVI at

Attached Files
.pdf   Scan002.pdf (Size: 844.68 KB / Downloads: 3)
Interesting info. So, how did the meeting go? Did ya'll get to say anything or make suggestions?
It was an intense meeting, and it was great to meet Taffy, Nancy, Larry, Donna, and Steve. I am hopeful those that get to make the decisions listened to us and a safe solution for the wild sheep and our passion can be balanced.
Yes we did get to speak. Larry presented NAPgA's list of Best Management Practices (see attached PDF from the NAPgA website). Each of us spoke. The Blue Mtn NF team writting the plan revision did listen. They want recommendation from us for consideration with a focus on "Engineering, education and enforcement". How would our plan be implemented or engineered, how would we educate the packgoat public, and how would we see it being enforce. 

Understanding this disease process is important in understanding what ammo these land mangers may use to keep our packgoats out of the forests. Things seem like they are changing as this MOVI pathogen is better understood. This summer at the Rendy our speaker Dr Maggie Highland, DMV talked about this same issue. I have a copy of the paper she handed out at the Rendy. She talked about "Mo" this was her nick name for the same mycoplasm, MOVI. Her presentation noted "Healthy negative big horn sheep herds have been identified that develop disease upon introduction of MO into the heard" and there was no disease outbreak in big horn sheep that were Mo free. Disease meaning pneumonia. If you would like a copy of her presentation please email me.

Attached Files
.pdf   napga bmp.pdf (Size: 203.8 KB / Downloads: 2)

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