DOMESTIC ANIMALS

We also have friendly domestic animals here at Fort Rickey for you to interact with:

DESSERT PAINTED SHEEP

The Painted Desert Sheep is a spotted hair sheep that received most of its influence from the Mouflon. Before being established as a separate breed, it was considered by many to be a parti-colored Corsican. Other early influence came from Merino and Rambouillet, and a few four-horned individuals stem from Jacob or Churro ancestry. Long desired by hunters because of the large horns and aesthetic, flashy looks, the Painted Desert is now popular among exotic and alternative livestock fanciers.

These sheep shed their short winter wool naturally each spring, leaving a glossy, slick coat. Colors can be very wild with mixes of up to four or five colors. They breed out of season and lamb twice a year, with twins and even triplets occurring often. They produce a carcass of lean meat without a muttony taste. Rams must show Mouflon influence by sporting a luxurious mane in addition to large, heavy horns of homonymous, supracervical or polycerate types. Some ewes may be horned.


FERRET

Ferrets are cute, active, playful and entertaining animals. Although very active, they do sleep a lot, as much as 16 hours a day. Males are larger than females and ferrets are usually 3 to 4 pounds but larger ones can be as heavy as 6 pounds. Many have dark brown fur but they can also be black, gray, tan, or even albino.

Ferrets make good pets and are happy living alone or with another ferret. They are social animals and often like meeting new people. They are fun, playful, and active. Much like dogs and cats, they will need annual visits to a veterinarian for vaccinations. They also require regular baths and grooming. Ferrets can even be taught to walk on a leash and can be litter trained.


FINN SHEEP

In the last 15 years, more research work and data has been compiled in the United States involving Finnsheep and their crosses than any other breed of sheep. A steady increase in registration numbers attest to the breed’s acceptance and viable place in the sheep industry.

Mature Finnsheep rams will range in weight from 150 to 200 pounds (68-90 kg), females are slightly lighter with a range of 120 to 190 pounds (55-86 kg).

The fleece from a mature ewe will range in weight from four to eight pounds (1.8 to 3.6 kg) with a high yield percentage. The fleeces have a numerical count of 50 to 60 or 23.5 to 31.0 microns with a staple length of three to six inches (7.5-15 cm). While white is the predominate fleece color on the breed in the North America, they are found in a number of natural colors in Finnland.

Finn Sheep

LIONHEAD RABBIT

The Lionhead Rabbit has its origin in Belgium. The mane of these miniature rabbits encircles their tiny heads, which looks similar to the mane of the lion. With a small body structure, lionheads weigh 2.5 to 4 pounds.

Though new to the different rabbit breeds, lionheads are soon becoming popular as pets. Their compact size and unique mane structure is appealing to many animal lovers. These rabbits are very friendly, but require sufficient attention from its owner or the family members. Once trained, they make good companions and love being cuddled.

Fresh timothy hay and low protein rabbit pellets prove sufficient for this rabbit. This hay, is rich in fiber and helps in smooth running of digestive system.


MALLARD DUCK

The mallard or wild duck (Anas platyrhynchos) is a dabbling duck which breeds throughout the temperate and subtropical Americas, Europe, Asia, and North Africa, and has been introduced to New Zealand and Australia. This duck belongs to the subfamily Anatinae of the waterfowl family Anatidae.

The male birds (drakes) have a glossy green head and are grey on wings and belly, while the females have mainly brown-speckled plumage. Mallards live in wetlands, eat water plants and small animals, and are gregarious. This species is the ancestor of most breeds of domestic ducks.

Pekin Ducks

NUBIAN GOAT

Nubian Goats have long, bell-shaped ears that extend an inch beyond the face, and small upturned tails. Their fur is short and glossy and can come in a variety of colors including black, tan and red. They are immediately recognized for their long pendulous ears and roman (arched) noses.

Nubians were originally known as a dual purpose breed contributing to both milk and meat. Thus making them the perfect homestead livestock, requiring minimal hay and grain with an excellent return. Nubians are a very social breed and desire individual acknowledgment from their caregivers.

Todays nubian is recognized greatly for the dairy production, and not as much a meat goat. One of the main aspects which differentiates the nubian from other dairy breeds is the high fat content in the milk, measuring 5% or more. The doe with quality genetics can also milk 1,360 kgs (3000 lbs) during a lactation period. 6-8 liters a day is not unheard of in a well bred doe.


PEKIN DUCK

The Pekin duck is a domesticated duck used primarily for egg and meat production. It was bred from the Mallard in China, it was brought to the United States about 1873, where it is the most popular commercial duck breed.

Due to its friendly nature, more and more people are enjoying this breed as pets. Their average lifespan (if not used for meat production) is about 9 to 12 years.

It is widely believed that Donald Duck is modeled after a Pekin duck.

The mascot of the insurance company Aflac is a Pekin duck.

Pekin Ducks

PONY

The ancestors of most modern ponies developed small stature due to living on the margins of livable horse habitat. These smaller animals were domesticated and bred for various purposes all over the northern hemisphere. Ponies were historically used for driving and freight transport, as children’s mounts, for recreational riding, and later as competitors and performers in their own right. During the Industrial Revolution, particularly in Great Britain, a significant number were used as pit ponies, hauling loads of coal in the mines.

Ponies are generally considered intelligent and friendly, though sometimes they also are described as stubborn or cunning. Properly trained ponies are appropriate mounts for children who are learning to ride. Larger ponies can be ridden by adults, as ponies are usually strong for their size. In modern use, many organizations define a pony as a mature horse that measures less than 14.2 hands (58 inches, 147 cm) at the withers, but there are a number of exceptions. Different organizations that use a strict measurement model vary from 14 hands (56 inches, 142 cm) to nearly 14.3 hands (59 inches, 150 cm). Many breeds classify an animal as either horse or pony based on pedigree and phenotype, no matter its height. Some full-sized horses may be called “ponies” for various reasons of tradition or as a term of endearment.

Finn Sheep

ROOSTER

A rooster also known as a cockerel or cock, is a male gallinaceous bird, usually a male chicken. Mature male chickens less than one year old are called cockerels. Roosters are larger, usually more brightly colored, and have larger combs on top of their heads compared to hens (female chickens). Chickens can fly but because they are heavy, they can only go about 60 meters .

They have bad senses of smell and taste, but good hearing. They scratch and claw at the ground, looking for food. Baby chicks can eat and walk without help soon after hatching but they still need help keeping warm.