News & Media

'Herd' about the goats clearing weeds from EastLink?

VIDEO

The EastLink landscaping team has recruited goats to clear weeds from a steep and rocky area of EastLink landscaping in Donvale.

Goats have a voracious appetite for non-native weeds, and are particularly sure-footed and 'at home' on tough terrain.

Over the past few weeks, the goats have successfully cleared the first target area of weeds. Several more areas will be targeted over the next few months.

To ensure goat and public safety, the goats have no access to the freeway area or EastLink Trail.

The benefits of using goats to clear weeds include:

  • Goats kill weeds like blackberries by pruning the foliage and leaf buds, which exhausts the root system and kills the plant. Unlike glyphosate (a herbicide), this means soil fungi, insects and worms are unharmed.
  • All unwanted vegetation is dealt with on-site by the goats, so no vegetation needs to be removed and handled off-site.
  • Potential fire load is being eaten or trampled, and will not require further attention this summer.
  • Once cleared, the area will provide a better habitat for ground fauna and will attract a greater variety of bird such as Finches, Wrens, Kookaburras, Butcher Birds and Kites.

The goats have been provided and are cared for by Colin Arnold of Graze Away. Colin has extensive experience, and has been working with goats for 20 years to restore native habitats.

BEFORE: The area as it was before the goats were introduced:

Goats Aug2018 before 600w

AFTER: The same area as it was on Sunday 26 August 2018 - the dense undergrowth of weeds has been completely removed:

Goats Aug2018 after 600w

EastLink. Time Better Spent.