July 5, 2011 - Parks and Recreation Department utilizing goats to control weeds at Boulder Reservoir
For the 11th consecutive year, the City of Boulder’s Parks and Recreation Department is employing an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) approach to control invasive weeds in non-irrigated park areas by grazing between 300 and 350 goats in the areas. The goats will be arriving on the east side of the Boulder Reservoir (along the dam) around July 7-8 and will stay for approximately one week. Park users should not be impacted by the goats, but are asked to keep dogs leashed along the dam faces in the area of the goats in order to avoid encounters with and to not impact the goats.
Goats have been utilized effectively as a control for many weeds, as they eat even prickly weeds. The state of Colorado's noxious weed act requires monitoring and control of certain plant species, and the Parks and Recreation Department complies with this state mandate by applying the four IPM techniques for weed management - mechanical, biological, cultural and chemical. The use of biological controls, such as goat grazing, is important as the department seeks to reduce the amount of herbicides used.
When done at the proper times, grazing prevents the current year's plants from going to seed and depletes the root system's reserves. Grazing also recycles organic material back into the soil and cultivates the ground allowing for better water infiltration, aeration and sunlight exposure.
For more information, call Shelly Ruspakka, Parks and Recreation, at 303-413-7214.
Last Updated on Friday, 15 June 2012 08:15