It seems the City of Calgary has gone totes ma goats for a 100-strong herd of goat garburators that are helping to keep the city free of weeds.
For the past three weeks, the goats have been grazing in Confluence Park (West Nose Creek Park), part of a city pilot initiative to manage invasive plants in parks.
The pilot ends this Sunday, but it seems the City just can’t bear to part with the goats – so they’re hosting a meet and greet in the park on Saturday.
“Calgarians have been very supportive of using goats as a weed management tool,” says Chris Manderson, urban conservation lead for Calgary Parks.
“We now know that we can use goats in an active park without disrupting park visitors’ enjoyment of the park, whether on foot, on bicycle, or with a leashed dog.”
Manderson says early signs show the goats have done an “excellent” job chewing up weeds like Canada thistle, hound’s tongue, and hawkweed.
Once the goat grazing pilot ends, Calgary Parks will review the project to see if the program could be expanded to other City parks.
Meanwhile, on Saturday, you can drop in and meet Jeannette the shepherd and her team, and pet and feed the baby goats, horses and herding dogs at Confluence Park.
If you want to come along, make sure to wear clean clothes and shoes, particularly if you’ve been around other livestock, and leave dogs at home to avoid stress for the goats.
Where: Confluence Park (West Nose Creek Park) – 300 Beddington Trail NE; parking is on the Beddington Trail lot, staff and signage will provide direction to the goats.
When: Saturday, July 9 from 11 am to 1 pm
More info: calgary.ca/goats