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SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) — A goat’s ability to chew and maintain public property at the same time will be getting a test run in Savannah this summer, when the city will use the animals to clear hard-to-reach vegetation.

The Savannah Morning News reports the city will rent 60 goats and two livestock guardian dogs from Atlanta-area company Get Your Goat Rentals. The goats, expected to arrive June 19, will be used to remove vegetation along a ravine in the Laurel Grove North Cemetery and at the Clinch Street Pond behind Derenne Middle School.

Goats are able to clear vegetation in areas that are difficult for workers to clear or to access with machinery. Experts said they thrive on poison ivy, poison oak, Kudzu, blackberries, nasty vines, and briers; and cost-savings are expected to result from using the goats instead of city staff. In addition, city officials said the goats are more environmentally friendly since the type of vegetation they eat ordinarily requires heavy machinery or toxic chemicals to manage and they leave behind natural fertilizer.

While the goats are working they will be confined using marked electric fencing. Get Your Goat Rentals estimates it takes 20-25 goats one week to eat one acre of vegetation.

The cities of Atlanta, Roswell and Sandy Springs are already using goats to clear vegetation.


Information from: Savannah Morning News,