Christmas Tree Eating Goats - ABC6 - Providence, RI and New Bedford, MA News, Weather

Christmas Tree Eating Goats

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By: Melissa Toupin

mtoupin@abc6.com

As we get ready to ring in the New Year people are starting to get rid of their Christmas trees. One Middletown farm is taking those trees out to pasture.

For years Simmons Farm has welcomed visitors to their petting zoo. Now they've added a new attraction. Well, sort of.

"It started a few years back when we gave them our own Christmas tree," said Karla Simmons.

The family farm's 50 goats have taken a liking to the pine needles, chomping and chewing on the branches.

"The pushier ones will get first. And then the wimpier ones will have what's left," said Simmons.

The tradition grows with each passing Christmas. Neighbors have begun to drop off their used trees for the goats to munch on; A good alternative to throwing them away.

The goats don't leave anything to waste. Once the pine needles are gone they start on the bark. After about 2 days the tree is peeled clean.

But it's not just the goats that enjoy the holiday treat. The lambs and cows also flock to the trees put out in the pasture.

The Simmons' say the timing couldn't be better. The animals have already eaten everything else in the pasture.

"They've eaten all the leaves off the trees that they could reach. They've eaten all the grass, so there's not a whole lot green left for them," said Simmons.

The goats enjoy every last bite knowing this delicacy only comes around once a year.

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