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Capra hircus

Basic information
Scientific name Capra hircus

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Common names Feral goat
Higher taxon Bovidae, Artiodactyla, Mammalia
Natural range A domestic animal. This species may be originally domesticated in West Asian montane area B.C. 10000 to 7000, and the ancetral species may be the wild goat Capra aegagrus, discontinuously distributed in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, Middle East, Caucasus, to Turkey montane regions. Although the origin of the domestic goat is considered to be the Caucasian subspecies C. a. aegagrus, it may require further studies.
Habitat Various terrestrial habitat.
Invasion information
Range in Japan Chichijima (Ogasawara), Hachijojima (Izu Islands), Madarajima (Saga Pref.), a part of Goto Islands), Uji Islands, Yakushima (Osumi Islands), Akusekijima, Gajajima (Tokara Islands), Amamioshima, Tokunoshima (Amami Islands), Ihejima, Yanahajima, Agunijima, Kerama Islands (Okinawa islands), Iriomotejima, and Uotsurijima (Sakishima Islands). Range in Japan
Origin Unknown. Various strains have possibly been introduced repeatedly.
Date Introduced to Ryukyus in 15C, to mainland since late 19C. According to old literature, feral goat in Ogasawara was not observed in 1824 and already established in 1853.
Route Deliberate: Escape or release of domestic animals.
Impact Feeding on various plants and destruction of vegetation. This cause decline of endangered and endemic plants, destruction of bird habitat, incursion of soil to sea, which cause degradation of coral reef and fishery site. Damage on agriculture. Pollution by feces.
Native organism(s) affected: Various plants (e.g., Lobelia boninensis, Cirsium boninense, Crepidiastrum ameristophyllum, Asarum senkakuinsulare, Hypericum senkakuinsulare, and Limonium senkakuense), birds (e.g., Phoebastria nigripes, Sula leucogaster, Puffinus pacificus), Mogera uchidai, coral reef. Crops and fishery resources.
Regulation in Japan Controled by several local ordinances: In Saga Pref., moving and trade are prohibited; In Amami City of Kagoshima Pref. and Hachijojima Is. of Izu Islands, goat owners must register and keep their goats within fences.
Introduced range in other countries Various islands. Fiji, Bahamas, Haiti, Cayman Islands, Cook Islands, Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, Reunion, Canary Islands, etc.
Reference Notes
  • Abe (ed) (1994) A Guide to Mammals of Japan. Tokai Univ. Press, Hatano (in Jpn)
  • Ecol Soc Jpn (ed) (2002) Handbook of Alien Species in Japan. Chijinshokan, Tokyo (in Jpn)
  • IUCN (2012) The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (Accessed on 2012-7-04)
  • Izawa et al. (eds) (1996) The Encyclopedia of Animals in Japan 2 Mammals II. Heibonsha, Tokyo (in Jpn)
  • Ohdachi et al. (eds) (2009) The Wild Mammals of Japan. Shokado, Kyoto.
  • Yamada et al. (eds) (2011) Invasive Alien Mammals in Japan: Biology of Control Strategy and Conservation. Univ. Tokyo Press (in Jpn)
  • etc.
100 of the World's Worst Invasive Alien Species, 100 of the Japan's Worst Invasive Alien Species