MINOT, N.D. (KXNET) — Zoo workers in Minot just finished up some calving in April, as Roosevelt Park Zoo’s highland cattle Sully and Sage gave birth to a calf about two weeks ago.
Zoo workers named the calf ‘Sprite’ — not after the soda pop, they say, but for how spritely and full of energy the little cow was.
“So the day after she was born, she was in the barn,” recalled North Trail Outreach Relief Keeper, Bobby Van Dyke. “We managed to get her mom and dad in holding, and then we called our veterinarian Dr. Wood over so we could get a nice physical on her, make sure everything’s the way it’s supposed to be. So while one of my coworkers was cleaning, I was trying to keep her in the barn. So I was crouched down, kind of keeping her in the corner, not holding her, but just kind of keeping her there. And she jumped on me, knocked me on my back, and I’m holding her and I’m like ‘Ryan, you have to come help me’.”
Van Dyke, who cares for the animals, says highland cattle come from Scotland — but it doesn’t take them long to get used to North Dakota.
“These guys are way different than like your typical dairy cow,” Van Dyke continued. “They have this really awesome double coat. They have a really long outside coat and an inner coat that’s made up of wool. So they don’t have to get that outer layer of fat that other dairy cows would have to get to survive in the cold, they just got the fur for it. So they do actually really, really awesome here in our North Dakota winters, which is saying something.”
Van Dyke says once Sprite is old enough, she’ll be sent to another zoo, where families can see her. Her future home has not yet been determined.