Government Shutdown Puts Goats Out of Work

Eco-goats are off the job too. (Published Tuesday, Oct. 1, 2013)

More than two dozen poison ivy-eating Nubian goats were moved from a national recreation area in New Jersey in advance of the partial government shutdown.

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Since July, the herd has been devouring a poison ivy infestation that has overtaken Fort Hancock. The Sandy Hook mortar battery defended New York Harbor during World War II.

Owner Larry Cihanek tells the Asbury Park Press he removed the animals from Sandy Hook and from Fort Wadsworth in Staten island, N.Y., for their own protection because the parks are closed due to the shutdown.

The Sandy Hook Foundation is paying about $12,000 to use the goats to clear the site to make it more accessible to the public.

Cihanek told the paper it appeared the goats were doing the trick.

“There was essentially zero poison ivy. I would consider it totally successful.”

It could take continued grazing though to ensure the poison ivy stays away.

The animals live on a farm in Rhinebeck, N.Y.