For hikers, campers, picnickers and anyone who sets foot in the woods this summer, poison ivy can be a nuisance if not an outright ordeal.
But if you’re a goat, a huge patch of poison ivy is basically an all-you-can-eat buffet.
Fort Hancock is an old military installation on Sandy Hook on the Jersey Shore, part of the Gateway National Recreation Area. The fort has become badly overgrown with poison ivy in recent years. So last year, the Sandy Hook Foundation brought in a herd of goats to munch their way through the ivy.
This week, the goats returned for seconds, according to the Asbury Park Press: Goats back for more poison ivy at Sandy Hook: APP, July 15, 2014
The goats belong to Larry Cihanek, who owns Green Goats in Rhinebeck, NY. The company bills itself as “environmentally friendly vegetation removal.” The goats’ resume (or menu?) also includes, according to Green Goats’ website, Fort Wadsworth on Staten Island, Vanderbilt Mansion, and Freshkills Park.
The goats were also the four-footed landscapers-in-residence at Lincoln Woods in Rutherford, NJ in 2012: Rutherford’s Lincoln Woods to be cleared of poison ivy by goats: NorthJersey.com, Oct. 11, 2012
It’s not just goats that are getting in on the weed control act: Last year, it was reported that Chicago O’Hare was using a crew of llamas, sheep and donkeys – and goats, too – to keep the grass in the fields around the airport cut low. Read more about it here: Chicago O’Hare Llamas to Complement Team of Airport Animals: Huffington Post, Aug. 18, 2013