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Hiking with Hailey: Goat Island at Lake Martin

Updated: Jun. 6, 2021 at 7:05 PM CDT
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DADEVILLE, Ala. (WSFA) - Here on Hiking with Hailey, we’re no strangers to wildlife – remember last season when we hung out with alligators at Alligator Alley? For this week’s episode, we’re going a little bit more domestic. We’re checking out goats on Goat Island.

The goats are very friendly, and love Cheetos and getting pets!
The goats are very friendly, and love Cheetos and getting pets!(Source: WSFA 12 News)

It’s hard not to laugh when these loveable land creatures are just kidding around all day, living on island time, without a care in the world, thanks to Stacie Baker and her family.

“So my family has been doing this for 12 years,” said Baker. “My dad took over from some families that used to do this and he started having some medical problems, and so my husband and I and my family, we do this every year.”

And every summer, the Bakers row, row, row their goats back to their lakeside paradise, where they do whatever floats their goat.

“We usually bring them in April every year,” said Baker. “They stay throughout the summer and as long as the weather stays warm, we usually take them home October or November. There’s 12 on the island right now, and they all have names! They’ve all been named by my three girls, they have different personalities. They are very sweet and loving and all of them just love to be petted all the time.”

The Baker family usually brings the goats over on their pontoon boat in April, and they hang...
The Baker family usually brings the goats over on their pontoon boat in April, and they hang out on the Island until the fall.(Source: WSFA 12 News)

But this is no ordinary island. Equipped with plenty of places to climb and kid around, Goat Island is the perfect place for these “baaaaad” boys to spend their summers.

“This island is 70 acres and normally they stay right here in this area where we are, but often times they will go out into the island to get their leaves and eat, and there’s several beachy areas on one side of the island that they’ll visit from time to time, but 90% of the time there right here,” said Baker.

So just how do they survive on Lake Martin? Thanks to lots of visitors with their favorite snacks, these four-legged farm animals feel right at home, with full bellies and plenty of pets.

And getting to Goat Island is simple: hop on a boat, jet ski, or whatever kind of watercraft you take out on Lake Martin… pack some snacks, and be prepared to have an udderly good time.

The goats live on the island during the summer and enjoy fresh lake water and plenty of snacks...
The goats live on the island during the summer and enjoy fresh lake water and plenty of snacks from visitors every day.(Source: WSFA 12 News)

”I am a registered nurse. It’s a full-time job, and this is also a full-time job,” said Baker. “Most of the time we come out here in the afternoons and on the weekends to check on them. It’s a lot of work but the reason we do this is because we come, and we just see the enjoyment they bring to everyone on this lake. We’ll just stand back and watch what these goats bring to just about everyone who walks onto this island.”

The island is free to visit at any time, but out of safety for the animals, please do not bring dogs onto the island!

Copyright 2021 WSFA 12 News. All rights reserved.