Need Weeds Cleared? Bring In These Specialists, The Eco-Goats - FOX 29 News Philadelphia | WTXF-TV

Need Weeds Cleared? Bring In These Specialists, The Eco-Goats

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PHILADELPHIA -

You could use fancy mowers, trimmers and clippers to rid your property of tall grass, weeds and invasive plants.

Or you could bring in a team of living, breathing "specialists."

Meet the Eco-Goats.

Brian Knox's Maryland-based team of grazers specializes in clearing hard-to-clear property. 

"They can go places that people can't- or don't want to," Knox explained to FOX 29's Bruce Gordon.

"Steep slopes like this are ideal. Places with lots of rocks, thorns, high tick areas." 

This week's job: An acre of embankment at the Millbourne SEPTA El stop, part of the Market-Frankford line.

Borough officials say it's been overrun by poison ivy and an invasive plant called Japanese Knotweed.

Get it? It's Knotweed, but it IS a weed! 

"It propagates," says borough council president Jeanette Macneille. "You know, you get a tiny little piece of root or something and it'll grow into a whole new plant. It's really hard to get rid of."

Knox sets up electrified fencing to keep his goats away from the Yew trees that are poisonous to his team.

These ravenous little buggers do the rest.

For the next four days, adults and babies alike will do little but eat, sleep and produce fertilizer. 

"We get about 14-15 hours a day out of goats," says Knox. Without complaint. "They work for food."

The goats clear the land without need of herbicides, which could harm nearby Cobbs Creek.

And the total price for this environmentally friendly solution?

About $3,700, less than the cost of a human team.

In fact, the toughest part of the whole process is transporting the goats long distances, from job to job.

Knox says they get a little restless. "Yeah, you can feel them moving around a bit in the trailer quite a bit. They shove each other around and the thing rocks back and forth."

What is it with "kids" and long cars rides?

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