Wakefield’s animal family expands


Photo Courtesy of Kelly Foster

Two pygmy goats have recently joined Wakefield’s family.

Maggie Finn, Social Media and Business Editor

The students at Wakefield have a chance to get hands-on experience with farm animals for free. Wakefield provides classes where you learn responsibility and life long skills while caring for animals. We have multiple types of animals that live here at Wakefield including chickens, rabbits, quill, guinea pigs and chinchillas. We recently got a new addition to our mini farm, Pygmy Goats.

“My favorite memory with the animals was going to buy the guinea pig,” Skylar Snowden, senior, said. “Our other guinea pig died, and I decided to replace him with Todd.”

Staff Photo by Allie Mariotte
Bucky wakes up to the rush of students rolling in to class, his favorite part of the day.

Kelly Foster is the teacher behind the scenes of the farm at Wakefield. She houses the guinea pigs, rabbits and one of the chinchillas in her room. If you want to take care of the animals, her class is the one to take.

“As long as you’re in an animal class and you have experience,” said Foster. “Mrs. Riedel’s sustainable class or horticulture take care of them [animals]. Then there are kids in my animal science one and two, or in my equine class or my vet class.”

Jenna Gore, senior, is going to North Carolina State University to continue her career with animals. She will be majoring in poultry science. She is one of the FFA leaders and has found a love for animals from taking animal science classes at Wakefield.

“I took an animal science class, and one of the first days we went out and looked at the chickens, and after that day I started to care for the animals more,” said Gore.

Staff Photo by Allie Mariotte
Nibbles the Chinchilla shows off her luscious whiskers.

Jodi Riedel has been a teacher here since Wakefield first got animals. She has been to Wakefield since 2002 and brought chickens to start the mini farm in 2012. Riedel was raised on an exotic farm with multiple types of animals and has loved them ever since.

“I wanted to get chickens, and no one in the county had them yet,” Riedel said. “I had them at home and wanted them here at school.”

Our goats’ names will be announced next week. They will live the chickens and rabbits outside. The enclosure is all set up and the goats have moved in. The goats are not used to people yet so the advanced studies class are the only people allowed to go near the goats.

Staff Photo by Allie Mariotte
Fashion shot of Nut and Tater Tot.

“One of the goats is darker and she is more outgoing and will run up to you,” Foster said. “The other one is lighter and she is still very timid.”

The animals have taught students things that can’t be learned in the classroom. It teaches the students responsibility and the skills to be able to care for a living creature.

“Some students don’t connect with other people, but find a way to connect with animals and [this] gives them an outlet to feel connected,” Riedel said.