A team of goats from Rhinebeck’s Green Goats farm has secured a summer job in Manhattan as weed-whackers in Riverside Park.
Beginning on May 21, the goats will be given an enclosed two-acre stretch of the park that has become overgrown with invasive and soil-damaging plants including Bittersweet, Multiflora Rose, Poison Ivy, Porcelain Berry and Wineberry. The goats will continuously consume those plants all the way down to the roots, with the goal of stunting their normal growth patterns until they have become fatally weakened.
The Riverside Park Conservancy welcomed the arrival of its four-legged summer laborers with a website that playfully renamed the city “Goatham” – a play on the old “Gotham” nickname, which actually means “goat town” in Old English. The Green Goats animals are retired dairy and 4H goats and family pets surrendered by their owners, and their weed-whacking skills have been in demand across the New York metro area since 2007.