Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park will have goats on park property, at Snodgrass Hill, beginning Monday, Oct. 2, where they will be “goat-scaping.” These goats will be used in areas with dense populations of invasive vegetative species such as Himalayan Blackberry, Multi-Flora Rose, Bush Honeysuckle, and Privet, to help manage and decrease their presence.
There will be a range of 40 – 200 goats on park property effectively and ecologically clearing about an acre of invasive vegetative species a day.
The goats will be kept behind an electric fence and will have livestock guardian dogs, as well as shepherds, with them at all times. Although the goats will not be able to be petted or played with, visitors are encouraged to visit and watch as they work to help restore the historic landscape.
Officials said, "Before the battle, much of the landscape had its understory cleared because local farmers allowed their livestock to roam freely. The livestock would trample and eat the understory growth, preventing the dense and shrubby understory from growing in as we see it today. The use of “goat-scaping” will work to return the landscape to its historical viewshed by utilizing livestock in the same way as farmers did over 160 years ago."
For more information about this project, contact Acting Resource Manager Abbey Vander Sluis at 706-866-9241, x103 or via email at email@example.com.