Monday, January 01, 2007


I was recently informed that a friend has...trouble distinguishing sheep and goats. I figured it would be nice to help her and anyone else with similar difficulties as best I can. What follows are a series of pictures comparing the beasties with a few extras. Tomorrow...or when I get around to it...I will post a pictures quiz and we will see what you learned.

First some Sheep.

Note that they are a uniform color and have curly hair. When they are shorn the hair is very short but is still very curly as it grows back in. They also lack horns and generally look pretty dumb.

Next, Goats. They come in a host of colors and even when their hair grows it remains more or less straight. Both males and females have horns though the males' horns can get much longer and spirally.

Here is a wee goat and its father. The male goat has whiskers on his chin. You can't see his horns but trust me they are pretty impressive. Also note the curiosity in the younge goats face...he thinks...most of the time.

This would be an alpaca. It is a close relative of the llama. In general alpacas are a solid color while llamas can be many different colors (this one is atypical) Llamas are much bigger much more misanthropic- they will spit at you for no real reason. Like sheep, they can both be shorn. Unlike sheep they have some inborn intelegence and a long neck. Neither llamas nor alpacas grow horns. (Bonus- they are related to camels)

One large beef cow with her friends. I'm not sure what to tell's a cow.

A cow moose, aka a female moose. They share a reseblance but your mama moose is much larger and has a bigger nose and stick up ears (not stick out ears). Plus moose don't live in fenced fields...they go through the fences as they pass by.

There you go....Someday soon I will update with a little quiz. Hopefully this helps.


The Red Queen said...

Really great photos!

Lu said...

hehe. by the way - goats can be long and furry too. Mohair and cashmere are both the hair of furry goats.
Also, camels and alpacas can be bred, and they make a cama. Scientists don't know if they're sterile yet tho, i think only because they have one cama.
I'm home from Honduras