They’re baaaack! Kudzu-eating goats return to clean up Knoxville

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KNOXVILLE (WATE) – For the third year in a row, goats return to Williams Creek Urban Forest in East Knoxville to clear bush and invasive plants.

The goats will start to chow down weeds between 10-11 a.m. on Wednesday.

They will continue to clear the property until October.

The Tennessee Clean Water Network is working with Whistlepig Farms and the city of Knoxville to restore the Williams Creek Urban Forest and the surrounding properties.

The Tennessee Clean Water Network is working with Whistlepig Farms and the city of Knoxville to restore the Williams Creek Urban Forest and the surrounding properties. (Source: Tennessee Clean Water Network)

Restoration plans for the property call for using goats to combat invasive species on the land for a three-year period, creating an interpretive trail through the property and working with the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation to remove Williams Creek from its list of impaired waterbodies due to habitat alteration and e.coli contamination.

“It’s great to have the goats back for another summer of fine dining on kudzu, privet and honeysuckle vine,” said Renée Hoyos, TCWN’s Executive Director. “This is a wonderful way to trim back the weeds in an environmentally friendly way without the use of herbicides and other chemicals that would threaten water quality in Williams Creek. Plus they are a joy to have around for the summer.”

Hoyos also said that Jeanie, the goat-herding dog, will be coming to the Williams Creek Urban Forest to chaperone the goats.

The event is scheduled for around 10 AM, but Richard Gibbs of Whistlepig Farms says goats don’t always cooperate. “We can’t really be perfectly precise with time as goats aren’t always cooperative nor do they always load easily into our truck,” Gibbs said. “We will try to get them there between10:00 and 11:00. They don’t always load easily.”

The public is welcome to join us to greet the goats on Wednesday. This event is kid friendly.

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