"Obviously, the most important part of this story is the visual of goats in trees." (Image Credit: YouTube/Gnxtgroup)
Goats can climb trees and also plant them.
Yes, I know. That is potentially the most random opening sentence in Ravishly history. But it’s true. There are goats in Morocco who climb argan trees, eat their fruit, and then expel the seeds so that new argan trees can grow.
Obviously, the most important part of this story is the visual of goats in trees, so here. Feast your eyes on goats feasting. In trees.
Fantastic, right? Don’t you want a goat tree for your yard?
Anyway, according to a new study called "Tree-climbing goats disperse seeds during rumination," the tree goats climb the organ trees and eat the fruit. (The article I read about this did not say whether these are the same argan fruits that provide the fantastic oil that makes my hair shiny, but it seems likely.) Scientists have known for years that goats can poop out the smaller seeds, which effectively plants them wherever the goats poop. But they didn't know if there was any way for the goats to disperse the larger seeds — those are about the size of an acorn and can’t pass through goat guts.
The scientific conclusion is that the goats spit out the seeds, and that is as effective at spreading them around as pooping them is. The seeds — both spat out and pooped — result in new argan trees sprouting up in the wake of the goats.
This story should have a happy ending in which goats are eco-heroes who are single-hoofedly helping argan production in Morocco, thus providing a livelihood for farmers and shiny hair for writers.
Alas, the goats giveth and the goats taketh away. The goats have a bad habit of eating the new growth trees before they have a chance to mature, thereby undoing all the good work their spitting and pooping did.
Goats gonna goat, I guess.
While this story may not have a very satisfying ending in terms of a dramatic arc, I think we can all agree that the knowledge that there are videos of goats in trees is good news. You’re welcome.