British army demotes regimental goat mascot for insubordination
- LONDON (AP) - A British army regiment's mascot goat was demoted in
disgrace after it disrupted a parade before a host of international
dignitaries to mark the Queen's birthday, a military spokesman said
The military mascot, a six-year-old male goat called Billy, was
downgraded from the rank of lance-corporal to fusilier - the same
status as a private - after army chiefs ruled his poor display ruined
the ceremony June 16 at a British army base in Episkopi, western
Lance-Cpl. Dai Davies, 22, the goat's handler, was unable to keep
control during the parade earlier this month, as the mascot darted
from side to side, throwing soldiers off their stride, spokesman
Capt. Crispian Coates said by telephone from Episkopi - one of two
British bases on the island.
"The goat, which has been the Royal Welsh Regiment's mascot since
2001, was supposed to be leading the march but would not stay in
line," said Coates.
"He was reported for insubordination and after consideration, the
commanding officer decided he had no option but to demote Billy."
Capt. William Rose, a soldier present at the parade, said the
goat "was trying to headbutt the waist and nether regions of the
A total of 11 mascots - including a ferret, an Indian black buck and
a ram - are kept by the British army but regiments do not take the
mascots on tours to combat zones. British members of Parliament were
told last month keeping the mascots costs the equivalent of about
$60,000 Cdn a year.
The Welsh regiment was presented with a goat from the royal herd in
1746 and Billy is descended from the same bloodline, said a
spokeswoman for Britain's Ministry of Defence, on customary condition
"He is not a grazing goat and has food flown in from Wales. Billy
also has an allowance of two cigarettes a day - both of which he
eats," said the spokeswoman.
Ambassadors from Spain, Sweden, the Netherlands, a United Nations
special representative and the head of UN forces in Cyprus all
attended the parade in Cyprus, Coates added.
cmon people, its a GOAT.
give him his 2 butts and leave him the ell alone already.