AKRON, Ohio — Until recently, the Akron Zoo was home to the oldest Himalayan tahr in North America. 

What You Need To Know

  • Tahr are close relatives to the wild goat

  • The tahr was the third oldest globally 

  • The zoo will not get anymore tahr and haven't yet decided what animal will replace it 

Angela Payerle is an animal keeper at the Akron Zoo, and she cared for Amanda, the Himalayan tahr. 

"You build a relationship with them, you learn all of their behaviors you learn what they will do and what they won’t do," Payerle said. "You kind of create this connection with them."

When Amanda passed away, Payerle was heartbroken. 

At 20 years old, Amanda was the oldest Himalayan tahr on record in North America, and the third oldest globally. 

"She was doing great, I mean like every day until the last couple of days she was hungry, willing to train, she was funny," Payerle explained. "She would always just follow you around. She would always get these weird looks on her face. If she got surprised she would just stop and look at you and I would be like, 'Hi Amanda, I'm here again,' and she would be like 'oh, it’s just you.'"

Payerle enjoyed teaching the public about Amanda, as the Himalayan tahr was a lesser known species at the Akron Zoo. 

"Most people walk up to the exhibit and they were like ‘oh these are just goats,’ and I would be like ‘no no no, these are special goats.’ These are goats that live in the Himalayan mountains and they're natural prey for snow leopards and things like that," she laughed. "These are really cool, exotic goats.” 

No more tahr will be coming to the Akron Zoo, which Payerle said is actually a good thing. 

"The reason we are not having them anymore is because they are doing so well in the wild that we don’t need to have them anymore, so its 50/50," she said. "We are happy that this was successful but we are sad we don’t get to see them any more."

The Akron Zoo hasn’t yet decided what animal will replace that tahr. 

“I kind of hope it’s another goat species but you know whatever happens., I’ll take care of it and I will love it,” she smiled.