March 19, 2015 | Tracy Loew
Weed-eating goats have arrived at Pringle Creek Community.
About three dozen of the animals will live on the southeast Salem property this week, chowing down on Japanese knotweed and Himalayan blackberry.
It’s an environmentally safe way to clear invasive weeds along Pringle Creek, which runs through the community.
It’s also likely the first time goat clearing has been used since the Salem City Council approved it in December.
On Monday, Rachel McCollum, of Yoder Goat Rentals, set up solar-powered electric fences to contain the goats. Tuesday afternoon, the goats were settling into their new, temporary home.
Later this week, McCollum said, a few of the goats will be brought out to interact with the public.
“We like to involve the community as much as possible,” McCollum said. “They take ownership in what’s going on. And a lot of young children do not have a lot of access to farm animals.”
Goats don’t really eat tin cans. But they actually prefer brush and broad-leafed plants to grass, according to the Noble Foundation, an Oklahoma-based agricultural nonprofit.
Their four-chambered stomachs help them digest tough matter like blackberries and ivy.