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Tucson goats snack on discarded Christmas trees

How one local petting zoo is helping to recycle trees
Tucson goats eating Christmas trees
Posted at 1:17 PM, Jan 02, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-03 14:26:02-05

TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN) — As the holiday season comes to an end, a lot of people are getting rid of their Christmas trees and one local petting zoo is helping visitors with that task.

"We are an exotic educational petting zoo," owner of Tucson Petting Zoo and Funny Foot Farm, Kenneth MacNeil said.

It's been a busy season at Tucson Petting Zoo and Funny Foot Farm at the 2400 block of W Wetmore in Tucson.

Owner Kenneth MacNeil serves up a special treat for his goats during the holiday season. His goats are chomping down on gourmet Christmas trees. As a matter of fact, the goats eat any and all Christmas trees that get donated to the zoo.

"We give the goats the Christmas trees because it's actually good for parasites when they eat the pine needles. The Christmas tree is totally edible by the goats it doesn’t bother them at all, and it helps to recycle trees instead of them going to landfills,” MacNeil said.

The petting zoo has been feeding the goats trees for years. The zoo normally take in about ten Christmas trees every season. Donors can call the zoo to make arrangements for a drop-off.

“We’ve taken in Christmas trees anytime people have extra ones that they don’t know what to do with,” MacNeil said.

The outdoors business model has helped the zoo survive during the pandemic. The zoo has been around for about 5 years and the pens are still full and open with plenty of exotic animals to see.

"We were a little scared for a couple months but for the most part we were able to be open through most of the pandemic because we are outside. We did get a decent number of customers in,” MacNeil said.

MacNeil will keep his tradition going as long as the trees and visitors keep coming and the goats keep eating.

“If you love animals come on down and meet some neat animals. Most of our animals are raised from babies so they’re very friendly love people love attention,” MacNeil said.

To donate your Christmas tree, call 520-276-4469.