Yes, goats are cool, photogenic, and very memeable, but they’re also great for keeping an ecosystem healthy! Community members can see and hear them in action at the annual “Meet and Bleat” on Saturday, July 15 from 9-11 a.m. at Harlow Platts Community Park.
Yes, goats are cool, photogenic, and very memeable, but they’re also great for keeping an ecosystem healthy!
Community members can see and hear them in action at the annual “Meet and Bleat” on Saturday, July 15 from 9-11 a.m. at Harlow Platts Community Park.
The “Meet and Bleat” event allows community members to see the goats up close, take photos, and pet them. We will have a goat that can be milked and baby goats to squeal over. While most goats will be behind a fence, community members can interact with some goats that will be out and on leashes.
“There will be about 30 to 40 goats, all female, and several baby goats,” said Heather Speicher from Homestead Ranch, the provider of the goats to the city for the third year. “They’ll be eating the weeds and would love to have community members come say hi and scratch them behind the ears, if they want.”
Event visitors should leave their dogs at home and not bring any food for the goats since they’re busy eating weeds. Visitors should park next to the playground on the south side of the park and follow the signage to the goats on the north side of the lake.
“The goats are a natural way to stomp out weeds, so we’re excited that they’re back to help out in the park,” said Ecology Supervisor Joy Master. “The goats are an important part of how the city supports native plant species by keeping invasive species under control, also called Integrated Pest Management. We use many different tools to manage invasive species, including education, prevention, and methods to remove existing plants from the ecosystem.”
The goats take care of Canada thistle, crown vetch, common teasel, and chicory weeds, and have managed weeds for over 20 years at the Boulder Reservoir, Tantra Park, Christensen Park, Gerald Stazio Softball Fields area, Maxwell Park, and Harlow Platts Community Park.
“The goats can’t get to the weed roots, but by chomping, digesting, and stomping on the plants, the goats minimize seed production,” said Master. “Weed management is important for the city to foster healthy native plant communities in our natural areas and comply with the state’s noxious weeds law.”
The herd of goats at the park can take care of approximately 1/4 an acre every eight days before moving on to a new section of the park. The goats will be on-site at Harlow Platts Community Park through mid-August.
We do our best to keep the goats inside the fence, but sometimes they do get out. If you do happen to see any goats "on the loose" please contact Heather Speicher from Homestead Ranch at 970-515-2122 or the Parks and Recreation Urban Ranger Hotline at 303-441-4418.
- Learn more about the city’s Integrated Pest Management program at bouldercolorado.gov/services/integrated-pest-management-program.