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Saturday, January 14, 2017

Don't dump your Christmas tree, give it to a goat

from CBC.ca

Melvin Rideout, co-owner of Birch Rhyne Farm and Stables, says pine trees make great feed for his goats. (Birch Rhyne Farm & Stables/Facebook)
Melvin Rideout, co-owner of Birch Rhyne Farm and Stables, says pine trees make great feed for his goats.
(Birch Rhyne Farm & Stables/Facebook)
Owners of a farm on the west coast are collecting unwanted Christmas trees for an unusual purpose.

Melvin Rideout, co-owner of Birch Rhyne Farm and Stables in Cormack, says pine trees actually make great feed for his goats.

"A lot of people don't even realize that goats are natural tree eaters," Rideout told CBC Radio's Corner Brook Morning.

The trees, he said, are rich in vitamin C. The needles also act as natural dewormers when digested by a goat.

"We have used trees in the past when we were cleaning out some of our land, but we figured it was a good way for people to discard their good trees."
Rideout says his goats are aggressive eaters, and can eat one tree a day. (Kevin Yarr/CBC)
Rideout says his goats are aggressive eaters, and 
can eat one tree a day. (Kevin Yarr/CBC)

Rideout said the goats see Christmas trees as a real treat.

"When we put the trees in the pens with our goats, they'll take the bark and the needles and they'll limb the tree right down to the wood itself ... before they touch their grasses."

Give a goat a day, Rideout said, and it can eat an entire tree.

"They're fairly aggressive eaters."

Rideout asks that people remove all tinsel and decorations from their trees before donating them.

The farm is hoping to collect about 30 trees in total for five goats — four adults and one kid named Hercules.

Rideout said the farm can arrange to pick the trees up, but dropping them off is even better.

To contact the farm, visit its Facebook page.

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