Meet Helga & Olga
April 13, 2010
Spring has sprung, and that means the arrival of four new Jacob’s four-horned lambs on the Farm
, born to mama sheep Phoebe and Emma at the end of March.
After zookeepers decided on “Phineus and Ferb” for Phoebe’s two male offspring, they opened up a naming contest to the public. Thanks to nearly 200 of you who voted, we have two winners! The female lambs will now be known as Helga and Olga.
According to Zoo Director Scott Silver, “Helga and Olga are cartoon characters (from Hey Arnold!
), which goes nicely with the boys names of Phineas and Ferb (also cartoon characters). And second, Helga and Olga definitely are of nordic origin, as are the Jacob’s themselves."
PS: If you’re planning a visit to the zoo’s farm and need help telling the difference between Phineus and Ferb and Helga and Olga, here’s a tip: The males have mostly black wool with spots of white, while the females’ colors are reversed.
About Jacob's Sheep
Jacob’s sheep are currently listed as threatened by the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy. This species has fewer than 1,000 annual registrations in the United States. WCS’s Queens Zoo acquired the breed in 2008 as part of a cooperative breeding program designed to help increase awareness about rare livestock.
WCS conducts and participates in similar breeding programs at its facilities and around the world, including the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ Species Survival Program, which helps maintain genetic diversity among endangered species in captivity. WCS is also working to save wild sheep and goats, including the massive spiral-horned Marco Polo sheep, in Central Asia.