A man in Utah couldn't stop looking at these weird goats, so he did the obvious thing: he started dressing like one and frolicking with a goat herd through the Utah wilderness. But what seems like a strange obsession could soon have real and dangerous consequences – goat hunting season starts in September.
Phil Douglass of the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources notes that while technically the Goat Man isn't doing anything illegal, he could be oblivious to the upcoming season of goat slaughtering.
"My very first concern is the person doesn't understand the risks," Douglass said. "Who's to say what could happen."
Who's to say, indeed. Sixty goat hunting permits, which are things that exist, will be issued for the area. But poor-sighted human goat killers aren't the only thing Goat Man has to worry about: his fellow goats could also turn on him. Says Douglass:
"They may get agitated. They're territorial. They are, after all, wild animals," he said. "This person puts on a goat suit, he changes the game. But as long as he accepts responsibility, it's not illegal."
Clearly, being a Goat Man is not for the faint of heart.
Goat Man was first spotted on Sunday by hiker Coty Creighton.
"I thought maybe it was injured," Creighton said Friday. "It just looked odd."
He said he pulled out binoculars to get a closer look at the herd about 200 yards away and was shocked. The man appeared to be acting like a goat while wearing the crudely made costume, which had fake horns and a cloth mask with cut-out eye holes, Creighton said.
"I thought, 'What is this guy doing?' " Creighton said. "He was actually on his hands and knees. He was climbing over rocks and bushes and pretty rough terrain on a steep hillside."
Creighton said the man occasionally pulled up his mask, apparently trying to navigate the rocky terrain. The man then appeared to spot Creighton.
"He just stopped in his tracks and froze," he said.
Creighton hid behind a rock and took some blurry pictures of the Goat Man, who soon put back on his mask and returned to scurrying around with his fellow goats. Then Creighton got a bit judgemental.
"We were the only ones around for miles," Creighton said. "It was real creepy."
While it's certainly unusual to see a Goat Man, it's important to remember that you can't just go around calling people, "creepy." People have feelings, even if they're dressed like a goat and hanging out with real goats miles away from any other humans.
Goat Man has at least one defender, though (who may or may not be Goat Man calling from the herd). Wildlife officials reported a phone call from a man who said, "Leave goat man alone. He's done nothing wrong." Which is true. Why can't we just let Goat Man be?
[Photo via AP]