You can leave the goats

Discussion in 'Goat Frenzy' started by dvfreelancer, Jun 27, 2010.

  1. dvfreelancer

    dvfreelancer New Member

    Aug 15, 2009
    But they never seem to be far away. Here we are in south Florida, working at an historical preserve. You'd think this would be as far from goats as you could get.

    But you'd be surprised.

    Plants grow here like nowhere I've ever seen. They have burn teams that burn large sections of land on a rotating basis. They have to burn the same sections three times a year to keep them under control. Trail maintenance is a never ending job as is trying to control what they call "exotics", foreign plants that have invaded and taken over from native plants.

    Teams of people will clear out the exotics after the burn team goes through. You can see where goats could come into this. There's a goat farm just a half mile from the gate where the pastures are so eaten down the poor goats are living on bare dirt.

    I'm going to see if I can meet the meet the owner and ask if I can bring a load of cuttings over to see if the goats can tolerate the exotics. If they can make a living on air potato and some of the other invading plants, I'm going to fill out a grant request to test the feasibility of using Capra hircus to control exotic plant invaders and clear land without burning or using herbicides. Then I can lease the goats from the guy with dirt pastures and we all win.

    Anyway, it should be feasible to let the goats handle the brush clearing in some of the less sensitive areas. Although goats will likely be as hard on native plants as the exotics, so I'm not sure it's going to work. There are no serious predator threats, except wild hogs. Gators don't stray far from the river and that portable electric fence should keep them at home. Escapes would be a problem because that would introduce a whole new feral animal problem, as bad as the feral hogs have become. Not using any males would help, or use only wethers. Need to think that through.
  2. jberter

    jberter New Member

    I hope this works out for all involved and it's a win-win problem solver. :) Thank you for getting involved first with the historical preserve,, how did you get into that prodject?? Also using just Does or wethers sounds like the way to go incase of excapee's and not causeing another problem like the feral hogs now there. Here is hoping that the farmer can get help with using the goats for what they love to do-- eating weeds and hopefully being able to eat the evasive exotics introduced there. :cool:

  3. lissablack

    lissablack New Member

    Nov 30, 2009
    Whoo-Hoo! Great to see a post from you!

  4. CrossCreekTX

    CrossCreekTX New Member

    Aug 10, 2009
    Central East Texas
    They are doing something like this in the West for fire control. Lots cheaper to have goats do it than a crew of men spraying and burning.
  5. elchivito

    elchivito Active Member

    Apr 18, 2010
    I know a guy who is making a substantial living clearing out federal land using his herd of boer cross goats. He has a flatbed truck for water and fencing and another truck to haul his goats, along with his camping rig. He cordons of a multi-acre area with corral panels he carries on the flatbed, turns the goats loose and then watches them eat the underbrush until it's cleared, then he moves on. Excess babies and older animals are rotated out to livestock auction a couple of times a year. He does this year round and loves it.
  6. dvfreelancer

    dvfreelancer New Member

    Aug 15, 2009
    Do you have a name for that guy? I'd really appreciate talking to him.

    The only difficulty is I don't know if I can stand it here long enough to do anything with the idea. This campground is dreadful. I'll try to stick it out but it's painful.

    Yeah, this should be a slam dunk project for biological controls and I'm almost positive the historical society that funds this place would support it.

    If I can hang in.

    Miss you guys and miss our goats, but not bad enough to stay in the craphole town we were living. On its very worst day this place is still a 100 times better than where we were.

    Goats rewl. :laugh:
  7. elchivito

    elchivito Active Member

    Apr 18, 2010
    He's on another local goat board I post on and he posts under a pseudonym. I'll shoot him a PM and see if I can get contact info for him.