DO GOATS GROW ON TREES?
by Michael Chinnici
Morocco is a magical, mystical and romantic country. Snake charmers, dessert camel rides, chaotic Medina’s and more, all make Morocco such a unique country to experience through photograph.
While traveling through southwestern Morocco on a recent Photo Adventure, I came across one of the most unusual sights. Goats in a tree. How could this be? These beautiful goats stood so confident and so peaceful, just taking in the view. How did they get there? Why are they up in a tree? And no, this is not a trick or Photoshop.
Nicknamed after the trees they climb, Argan goats climb these trees in search of food. The fruit from the Argan trees are some of their favorite food. These goats can climb trees as high as 30 feet. Over the centuries, these hoofed creatures have mastered the skill of climbing on branches. It’s quite acrobatic and a wonder to behold.
But the story gets even better. The droppings of the goats contain the kernels from the seeds of the Argan fruit, which are, strangely enough, used by locals to press and grind into oil.
The small, firm argan fruit has a thick peel and pulp surrounding an almond-shaped nut. Traditionally, members of the indigenous Berber tribes would gather nuts from the goat droppings, crack them open with stones, then roast and grind the seeds inside. The argan oil extracted from this process is high in essential fatty acids and vitamin E, and has long been used locally as a skin treatment and cooking ingredient.
If you ever get the chance to explore Morocco, I suggest you search out these amazing goats in trees. http://www.photoworkshopadventures.com/Morocco
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