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Quick Facts

Genus: Capra

Location: Nearly everywhere in the world.

The Scoop

The Scoop

Goats, the curious mowers

Did you know a herd of goats could mow your grass for you?

These animals — whose most noticeable physical features are horns and long hair around their faces that can be compared to human beards — love to eat grass, weeds and just about anything else growing in the wild. They are big eaters, too, consuming as much as eight pounds of plants every day.

You need a good fence to keep goats around, though. They are considered among the most intelligent of animals, and often will find the weak spot in a fence or pen and escape in an attempt to eat more grass elsewhere.

Keep the yard clean, though. Goats’ inquisitive nature means they will sample just about anything they find on the ground, including cans, cardboard and other trash.

Goats are good climbers and sometimes can be found climbing trees. But domestic goats, which generally are farm animals, are much different from what people call mountain goats. Domestic goats can be found nearly anywhere in the world, while mountain goats live in the mountains of the American Northwest.

Other Facts:

  • Goats seem to chew in a circle because their upper jaw is much wider than their lower jaw. This forces them to chew food only on one side of their mouths, and they must rotate the lower jaw in order to grind food.
  • While human babies often are more than a year old before they can walk, baby goats — also called kids! — start walking within minutes of birth.
  • Goats can be milked just like cows. In fact, goat milk is the second-most popular type of milk consumed in the world.
  • Goats always have two horns, which vary somewhat in shape and length from breed to breed. Many farmers remove horns from goats in their herd, however, as goats aren’t afraid to use them when they’re angry or threatened.

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