NEWS

Antrim municipal property is home to one last goat

PAT FRIDGEN
This Boer goat is the unofficial guardian of Antrim Township municipal property. He may not chase off intruders, but he will watch them for a while before running off himself.

The five billy goats gruff moved to Antrim Township last October, setting up their home in the densely wooded area behind the municipal building. Today just one remains, an elusive creature who keeps to himself. He is spotted on occasion by Antrim personnel, often by Roadmaster Paul Minnich, who is the first to work each morning.

Initially, a pygmy made itself at home in a box culvert the road crew later took for a project. That miniature visitor met its end on I-81. Minnich and other employees buried it on the property.

Another one was hit on Antrim Church Road. Two were captured by a neighboring farmer. And now one Boer goat remains wild and free, coming out at night.

“It used to sleep on the back steps until we made that pile of stone dust,” said Minnich after a late night meeting. “Now it rests on that pile.”

He pointed out the goat at the top of the mound. As humans approached in the brightly-lit parking lot, the goat jumped up and bounded off into the woods. By day it is sometimes seen in the fenced ditch along the interstate.

Members of the Greencastle Senior Activity Center just to the north didn’t realize one goat was still nearby. “Some of us called around to farms and the livestock auction when they first showed up,” said manager Danielle Henry. “No one claimed them.”

Carolyn Snyder remembered the little herd, which hadn’t been seen for months. “They used to leave their calling cards all over our driveway.”

Antrim Assistant Zoning Officer Lynda Beckwith didn’t know the one was still on the property. Last winter she had put out some hay but it didn’t appear to be touched. She smiled at the new knowledge.

“Boers are raised for their meat, but they also make wonderful pets.”