If you visited the Indiana Family Farm at the zoo last weekend, you might have noticed that our goats got some extra attention from zoo keepers. Many of our guests were curious why the goats were paraded, one at a time, into a nearby barn. It was goat-weighing day, of course!
The zoo keeps a variety of records on each of its animals, including weight. Zoo keepers track each goat’s weight throughout the year to look for any fluctuations. Keeping accurate health records, including weight, helps zoo keepers and vet staff monitor for changes in the animals. This in turn helps the keepers and staff to spot potential health concerns early.
“We weigh each goat monthly, or more often if we have concerns about the animal not eating enough,” states zoo keeper Chase Caldwell.
With goats, however, keeping up a robust diet usually isn’t a problem. Most of the zoo’s goats will try to eat almost anything, including maps, purses, shoe laces, and even the scale. “It’s a goat thing,” says Caldwell. “They like to test everything out to see if they can eat it. We don’t even have to train them to step onto the scale. We just put food out and they step right up.”
Which goat topped the scale? It was Oliver, a buff-colored male weighing in at 55.3 kilograms (about 120 pounds).
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