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Subject:   Goats - They're Baaaaaaack*
For Immediate Release:   
9/19/2007  10:45:00 AM
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Goats - Theyre Baaaaaaack*
Nip it in the bud, so to speak! Seattle City Light brings goats back for encore


Seattle - Seattle City Light is bringing Healing Hooves and the 280 goats back for a Fall clean-up at the North Seattle Substation, 814 NE 75th St., for three days starting September 24, 2007.

The herd is returning to do some clean-up work. After their June visit, a second set of new shoots and leaves on the blackberry grew as a result of rains in July. If the goats eat those shoots now it will help reduce the amount of regrowth next year.

Work with the goats originally started in September 2006 when 280 goats and the shepherd were turned loose on the brambles. Healing Hooves returned in June of this year to chomp down the Spring growth, but the added growth by the end of August meant the ruminants needed to make another trip to Seattle this year.

Our goal is to remove the unwanted vegetation from this steep slope in the safest way possible for the neighbors and our employees, says Betsey Searing, landscape supervisor for Seattle City Light. Our four-hooved friends are hungry and eager to help us out again. Their efforts will make it a lot easier for City Light workers to keep the vegetation maintained in the future. This is an experimental project. We might invite the goats back again if this vegetation proves stubborn to control.

Human crews continue to work along the fence line and clearing areas where the goats have cleared the vegetation down to rocks and dirt.

The goats are kept in a fenced enclosure. The shepherd uses a border collie to help herd the goats back and forth. A portable, electrified livestock fence keeps the goats away from the substations electrical equipment as well as the street. The entire area is enclosed by a chain link fence.

Neighbors of the substation in the Roosevelt/Maple Leaf neighborhood have been receptive to the goat herd. City Light received many complements on both the clearing of the brush as well as the use of the goats in lieu of more traditional vegetation clearing methods.

*Spoken in goat dialect



- End -

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