Edmonton goats pilot project back at Rundle Park

Weed-eating goats at Rundle Park in Edmonton on Monday, Aug. 14, 2017. Dean Twardzik, Global News

The goats are back in Edmonton. A group of 375 goats were at Rundle Park Saturday as part of the “Goatworks” program.

WATCH: A look at Edmonton’s goat coordinator

The program launched in 2017 and is now in its second year of a three-year pilot project.

The goats are meant to be an alternative to herbicides and provide an alternative to managing urban landscaping.

“We’re working with Olds College for our research component,” GoatWorks co-ordinator Joi Lakhan said.

“They’ll be evaluating the project over three years, so in 2019 we’ll hope to have more results and be able to talk about the future of this program.”

READ MORE: Meet Edmonton’s weed-eating goats at Rundle Park

The goats, who are trained to eat various weeds, work in areas of Rundle Park with high noxious weed populations.

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BAAH’D Plant Management and Reclamation owner Jeannette Hall said there’s plenty of work for the goats at the park.

“In some spots, we have some really loose sand, so that’s kind of a weed bed, and other areas we have a lot of erosion going on or topsoil,” Hall said.

“And in other areas, just overuse of chemicals has killed a lot of the microbiology in the soil and that’s deprived it of a lot of life forms as well.”

The goats are surrounded by herding dogs that are trained to not only herd the goats but keep them safe from predators.

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