JACKSON, Wyo. (AP) — Hunters have killed more mountain goats in Grand Teton National Park than expected.

The National Park Service began allowing hunters to pursue mountain goats this year in an effort to rid the park of the nonnative species.

Biologists warn the mountain goats could spread disease to native bighorn sheep.

Some 100-150 mountain goats inhabit the park and nearby areas. Forty-eight hunters won a lottery for licenses to kill goats in the park.

Wyoming wildlife managers thought the hunters would take no more than 15 mountain goats over the two-and-a-half-month season. Hunters recently surpassed that number, with six weeks left to go.

The Jackson Hole News & Guide reports some hunters killed mountain goats only to see the animals fall off cliffs and out of reach.

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