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Goats clean up Downtown L.A. hillsides

September 8, 2008 6:41:15 AM PDT
On a busy Monday morning in Downtown Los Angeles, it's rare to see folks stop and stare at anything. However, this Monday, 100 goats along 4th and Hill got a few ganders.

"Some of them haven't ever seen a goat. They've seen them on the movies; they've never seen a real one. They go, 'What is that?' It's a goat!" said George Gonzales, Ranchito Tivo Boer Goats. "They say, 'I've never seen a goat in my life.' Well, that's a goat, I'm sorry. "

Gonzales owns the herd that was grazing on a downtown hillside on Monday. Under contract with the city of Los Angeles, his all-natural solution to overgrown brush has become a popular alternative.

"These are natural ways of getting control of brush the old fashioned way. They're real good eaters ... they're hearty animals," said Gonzales.

The Community Redevelopment Agency oversees the project, which covers about a half acre of land. The goats grazed Monday and Tuesday in Downtown L.A. They will pause for feeding breaks at a nearby pen.

People couldn't resist paying a visit to the overnight guests that made a stop at 4th and Hill.

"I think it's a great idea. It saves money, you use no pesticides, there's no chemicals, you don't endanger the environment any more than you already have," said Chip Latshaw, a Los Angeles resident.

"I think it's a pretty great idea. We could get out the tractor with the weed wackers and all that sort of stuff, but why not let the goats have some lunch," said another resident.

The goats' next assignment will be to eat up 80 acres at Chaffey College in Rancho Cucamonga.

 

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