CASTLE ROCK, Colo. (KDVR) – The Town of Castle Rock is using a herd of goats to conduct fire mitigation in some of its open space areas.
Hundreds of hungry goats cannot wait to get their fill.
“The Town of Castle Rock is doing wildfire mitigation and noxious weed control using a natural alternative,” Castle Rock’s Natural Resource Specialist Barbara Spagnuolo said.
Seven hundred grazing goats have been pigging out at the Woodlands Bowl open space owned by Castle Rock, and they’re consuming everything including grass, weeds and trees.
“They are the only grazing animals that will stand on their hind legs and graze so we call that the browse line,” the owner of Goat Green, Donny Benz, said. “This is a tinderbox for fire. We are doing fire mitigation, we have a browse line here of 8 feet tall and down, that removes that fire ladder so the fire cannot travel nearly as quickly.”
Benz said the goat is just about the perfect animal for this job.
“They do 17 things at once, the hoof action, the manure, the urine that has a lot of nitrogen in it, the browsing, the recycling [and] the trampling,” Benz said.
Utilizing grazing goats is not a new concept, Goat Green has been around since 1996.
Benz said goat mitigation should not be the only method used, but to be honest, it might be the greatest of all time, alternatively referred to as the G.O.A.T.