Q: Are there any new babies yet?
A: Not yet, but we’re getting really close. Some of your mother animals are due to go any day now, so we should have some to share with you soon!
Q: What’s so special about Conner Prairie’s goats?
A: The Arapawa Goats are one the heritage breeds we have here at Conner Prairie. A heritage breed is a type of animal that has been around historically and that is genetically important to the Agriculture industry. Currently, there are only about 200 Arapawa Goats in the United States so we have them here to help show historically what goats would have looked like in 1836 Prairietown and to also help increase the breed’s numbers in the country.
Q: How much hay does Conner Prairie go through in a day?
A: Here to my right we have about 5 bales of alfalfa hay we feed to our sheep and our goats everyday, and to my left we feed one of these big bales everyday to our cattle.
Q: What is the most challenging part about having animals at a place like Conner Prairie?
A: There’s a lot of challenges, but there’s also a lot of rewards. For me, I think the most challenging part is finding ways to let guests interact with the animals and have those unique experiences while still being able to keep the animals and the guests safe. A big part of my job is facilitating those experiences to ensure that our guests have a positive, educational and fun time while experiencing agriculture here at Conner Prairie.
Q: What is our favorite part about working with the livestock?
A: My favorite part is when the winter turns into spring time and the weather changes. The animals all young and old start getting really bouncy legs and race through the pastures.
Q: How can Conner Prairie guests be more considerate when entering the Animal Encounters Barn?
A: Right outside the barn we have this sign for if you have strollers. We’d prefer if guests leave their strollers outside so not to bring anything into our barn that may cause the animals to panic. Inside the barn we have a sign that says in the barn please use inside voices, quiet steps and gentle hands. We like to keep the atmosphere calm for the animals so that we have relax time for both guests and the animals.
When you come into the Animal Encounters Barn you’ll see some animals see some sheep and goats who are up on the floor. You’re allowed to pet them if you want to, but please approach them very quietly and softly. What you can do is pet them right on their backs and on their sides.
After you are done petting our animals, you should wash your hands. Use warm water, soap, and wash for at least 20 seconds.