Goats Are Now On-Duty at Another Rochester Park
They've been used at several parks around southeast Minnesota (including most recently for Olmsted County's Chester Woods Park near Eyota), and now a herd of goats is on-duty at another park here in Rochester.
They might be the cutest employees the Rochester Parks and Rec Department has on their staff-- and they're on the job right now at Indian Heights Park in northwest Rochester. They're a herd of 106 goats, who've been 'hired' by Parks and Rec to held help rid Indian Heights Park of invasive vegetation, like buckthorn and garlic mustard plants.
While most of us probably don't think much about the plants we might see if we're enjoying a hike at one of Rochester's parks, like Indian Heights (which gives you a really cool view of downtown Rochester, by the way). But they're more than a nuisance, invasive species grow quickly and can take over an area and crowd out native species of plants. So, it's a good idea to get rid of them. Which is where the goats come in.
According to a post on the Parks and Rec Department's Facebook page, these goats are actually the property of Goat Dispatch in Faribault, and they're on the job as we speak, munching on those invasive species found throughout the park.
"Goats are grazers, which means that they are able to reduce the leaves and stems of buckthorn and garlic mustard plants in an eco-friendly way- by simply eating. On June 7th, 106 goats from Goat Dispatch arrived and have significantly reduced buckthorn prevalence only two weeks later," the Parks and Rec Facebook page noted. You can see them in action in the video below.