Goats Invited To NYC Park And Help Get Rid Of Invasive Plants

The environment has become more of a concern in recent years, and rightly so. We should be taking more care of it and being more conscious of how we treat it.

This can start with small, everyday gestures and changes that we make, such as using alternative methods to herbicides to care for our lawns. Surprisingly, a very old method of using goats to control the growth of lawns and hedges, has actually made a comeback in recent times.

These days, many organic landscapers employ goats as walking weed whackers. And they’re pretty hearty too! Goats are naturally immune to natural poisonous plants, like poison oak, for example. They can easily eat that as if it were any other tasty snack. Plus, they also seem totally unfazed by any thorns that they encounter.

Photo: Pixabay/FitMum

Given their big appetites and their indestructibly, they were the perfect animals to tend to Manhattan’s Riverside Park with its many weeds and overgrown hedges.

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In order to take care of the shrubbery, two dozen goats were brought in to eat up. And that they did! The best part of having the goats be the gardeners is that harsh chemicals could be avoided and they saved thousands of dollars of labor costs.

Photo: YouTube/Reuters

The arrival of the calico-herd of goats was quite an anticipated event that eventually led to Reuters coining it the “Running of the Goats.” As expected, it drew plenty of onlookers.

As Dan Garodnick, Riverside Park Conservancy president and CEO, shared about the event in an intervie with Reuters: “They chowed down on Japanese knotweed, they noshed on porcelain berry, they snacked on multiflora rose, they easily traversed the hard-to-reach terrain behind me and gulped down poison ivy without even giving it a second thought It’s healthy for the goats and it’s good for the environment. That’s farm to table.”

Photo: YouTube/Reuters

The goats did a fantastic job of getting rid of many unwanted plants – even going as far as eating the seeds that would keep them from regrowing the next year.

The team of goats started out at a full pack of 24, however, it was determined that only 5 would get to remain as full-time employees within the park, eating up weeds until August 24th. Those five remaining goats are the adorable Skittles, Ms. Bo Peep, Chalupa, Mallemar, and Buckles. No doubt they will be enjoying their landscaping snack time!

Check out the video of the running of the goats below:

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