A group of skiers in the French Alps have captured dramatic footage of the moment an avalanche threatened to overwhelm a family of mountain goats.
They are then united with the rest of the group, and can be seen continuing their journey around the mountain – presumably in search of safer terrain. Fleeing down the slopes near Pralognan-la-Vanoise in the Rhône-Alpes, the group of Chamois goats splits into two, with half the animals escaping to the encouragement of those looking on.
At first it seems the second group is not so lucky, as four goats decide to hold their ground and disappear under the oncoming snow.
The French chalet-goers filming the events unfold say the animals must surely be dead – but then count them out as one, two, three and finally four emerge alive in a miraculous escape.
They are then united with the rest of the group, and can be seen continuing their journey around the mountain – presumably in search of safer terrain.
Slightly larger than the Roe deer found in the UK, Alpine Chamois by and large have a much more difficult time of things.
Grazing on icy meadows and ranging over treacherous slopes in order to find plants in the snow, with the decline in numbers of wolves and other large predators avalanches are now among their most common causes of death.