The goats were featured on the Today Show in May and named after the hosts. The Nature Center is currently engaged in a contest to rename them.
Thanks to the Eagle Scouts project and hard work of Jake Melcher, the goats have a great place to call their new home. Melcher, with help from the community, was able to construct a sturdy goat pen and a safe and secure goat shed for housing them overnight. Inside the pen is an old log, tractor tire and rocks for the "kids" to scamper around on.
The goats are Nigerian Dwarf. Weighing between 50 and 80 pounds and no more than 2.5 feet tall at shoulder height, they are a perfect breed for the nature center, which is visited by children and families. Nigerian Dwarf goats have a gentle disposition and come in many different colors. The breed can be easily trained and can even learn to walk on leash.
The nature center will use them for their school and public programs and birthday parties when they are leash trained, as they can fit easily into dog carriers.
Keith Marshall, director of education, said, "It is the New Canaan Nature Center's hope that not only will the goats become community favorites but they will also help with weed control since goats love to eat poison ivy. We welcome, and depend on, community volunteers to help with feeding the goats, letting them out at dawn and dusk and other related fun daily tasks. We are also hoping to have these goats and their care sponsored by the adoring community. Please let us know if you are interested in being a part of the NCNC Goat Team."
The goats fill out the "Backyard Sustainable Living" showcase at the New Canaan Nature Center. In addition to goats for weed control and even milk, the center has chickens for egg production, a maple sugaring program and syrup shed as well as a community garden for homegrown vegetables.
For information, visit www.newcanaannature.org.