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Half goat, half sheep born in Arizona

A rare animal was born in Scottsdale last Sunday. Her name is Butterfly. She is a geep, a cross between a goat and a sheep.

Half goat, half sheep, Butterfly is a geep
My Petting Zoo Facebook page

Her mother, aptly named Momma, is a sheep. Her father, Michael, is a pygmy goat. Butterfly has hooves like her goat father, and a head shaped like a goat. Her body is covered in wool, and has a tail like her sheep mother.

The cute little baby geep was named Butterfly since she is covered with spots and different colors.

Priscilla Motolas, owner of My Petting Zoo in north Scottsdale, told that she did not know the sheep was pregnant. "We noticed she got a little bigger, but we thought she was just eating more."

On Sunday evening, Motola said she and her three children went to feed the animals when her 8-year-old son found what at first they thought was a newborn goat.

"That's when we looked at the mama sheep and saw she had just delivered," Motola said.

Motola admits that Butterfly is more like a goat. "She's just running and jumping left and right."

Butterly may be the only geep in the state of Arizona, since a live, healthy hybrid offspring of a sheep and a goat is uncommon. Wikipedia writes that "Despite widespread shared pasturing of goats and sheep, hybrids are very rare, indicating the genetic distance between the two species." If the two do mate, the offspring of a sheep and goat will usually be stillborn.

Her Facebook page says that Butterfly is doing great and that she loves all the attention. Which is a good thing, because thanks to social media, this precious little geep has been getting a lot of attention indeed!

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