Animals

Nov 5, 2012 11:10 PM by Andy Koen

Weed eating goats to return to Bear Creek Park

EL PASO COUNTY - Around 500 brush and weed-eating goats are expected to return to El Paso County's Bear Creek Regional Park next week to chomp away at the weeds growing near the park's organic community garden. The goats are specifically raised for noxious weed control and have a remarkable track record.

"Cashmere goats eat about 25% of their body weight on a daily basis and never seem to get tired of the menu," said County Commissioner Sallie Clark.

The Bear Creek Garden Association raises money each year through donations, the sale of a book called "Sarge," which is based on a weed eating goat and from the groups annual Cornstalk Sale. Garden Association President Char Nyman says the goats are an old world solution a high fire risk problem.

"It's the oldest weed control known to man, dating back to Biblical times," Nyman said. "The goats really work. The area around the gardens was once filled with Canadian Thistles. You can't even find one now. Once the goats have grazed an area, you get all the good things growing again."

Along with controlling the weeds and reducing unwanted brush, the goats also work the soil with their hooves. Park volunteers then spread the seeds of drought friendly grasses in the area.

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