Ravenous ruminants are ‘new hires’ on Silverdale stormwater project

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Kitsap County Washington

Kitsap County News

Date:  October 4, 2019



Ravenous ruminants are ‘new hires’ on Silverdale stormwater project

Starting next week, over a hundred goats will arrive, accompanied by herder Tammy Dunakin of Vashon Island.  Their job: to clear brush around a newly reconstructed pond site off Newberry Hill Road in Silverdale.  In 4-6 days, the goats will use their sure-footedness and hearty appetites to clear over an acre of invasive weeds like scotch broom and blackberries from steep slopes on the site that would be difficult to access with heavy machinery.

"The goats not only eat an enormous amount of the biomass, they also sterilize the seeds in their digestive process. I call this the super power of goats. They can go where people and machines cannot go easily or safely," says Tammy, proprietor of Rent-A-Ruminant.  “We chose to use this eco-friendly approach because the goats clear the site faster and safer, and cause less damage to the soil,” says Steve Nichols, Kitsap County Stormwater Construction Manager.  “After the goats have removed the invasives, the slopes will be ready to cover with mulch.”

The goats will be working beginning the week of October 7.  They will be fenced in for their safety and to keep them on site.  Please do not touch the electric fence or attempt to feed the goats anything. 

After their work on the Koch Creek project, the goats will get a well-deserved rest.  “Our goats are all rescues,” says Tammy.  “When they cannot work anymore, they are retired to live out their days in peace at our farm on Vashon. We refer to this as The Old Goats Home.”  To find out more about Tammy and her goats, go to http://www.rentaruminant.com/

For more information on the Koch Creek Regional Stormwater Facility project, contact Tim Beachy at (360) 337-5777 or go to http://kcowa.us/project for project details.   

Contact Information

Michelle Perdue, Monitoring and Outreach Manager
360.337.5777 or mperdue@co.kitsap.wa.us


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