Goats hard at work clearing land in Seattle

SEATTLE -- Farhan Syed spends his free time at the office these days looking out the window with his co-workers.

We are men who watch goats, said Sayed, who works for a software company in downtown Seattle.

120 goats are at work on the hillside below the Alaskan Way Viaduct outside Sayed s window. The goats are under the supervision of Head Goat Wrangler Tammy Dunakin, who also owns the Rent-A-Ruminant company.

Dunakin said the Seattle Department of Transportation hired her and her goats to clear a site that is too steep and dangerous for humans and their equipment.

Goats have full-time full wheel drive, explained Dunakin, who said her goats are rescue animals who love to eat the blackberries, thistles and other weeds that clog up city lots at this time of year.

But for Sayed and his co-workers, the goats serve more as entertainment. Sayed said he loves to watch them and is a bit envious.

They don t worry about when they can eat and how it will affect them later; they just go out and say, Let me just eat this flower, and see how it feels.'

It feels pretty good to SDOT, which said in a news release that the goats can quickly clear overgrown and difficult areas without the use of herbicides.


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