Goats chow down on invasives in West Michigan parks

Jul 7, 2015

West Michigan parks get some help from roaming goats to keep invasive plants under control.


It’s summer, you’re talking with friends about lawn care, and some joker inevitably says, “why don’t you just get some goats to keep the weeds down?” Well, a West Michigan parks system is doing just that.

The Ottawa County parks system has “hired” a team of mostly young goats to keep down invasive species in the wilder areas of their parks, things like Oriental Bittersweet and also poison ivy, which isn’t an invasive but seems to be getting increasingly aggressive.

For more on the "goat brigade," Current State’s Melissa Benmark talks with Melanie Manion, the Natural Resources Management Supervisor for Ottawa county.

This segment is supported by Michigan State University's Knight Center for Environmental Journalism. More news about the Great Lakes environment can be found at GreatLakesEcho.org and on Current State every Tuesday as part of our partnership.