Harvey Says: Great Visit at Issaquah Highlands with the Goats

Three weeks in the Issaquah Highlands went by fast. The first week we were at Vista Park. Then we moved the goats up to Magnolia Street to a narrow tract between houses and the forest. There is only one way to bring the goats into the site so the goats have to come back the same way they went in. It is a site that takes all the electric fence netting that Craig has plus some. Craig was kept quite busy moving the goats on a daily basis. So, Nessie and I did not get a chance at the computer.

Due to the dry weather, one type of grass is more mature and it is like straw. Grass is not the goats favorite thing to eat so this mature grass is really low on their priorities, which is understandable since it has very little food value. It is like eating a complete diet of celery. As a result Craig had to push the goats to clean up some of the dry grass. One evening the goats decided to make a break for fresh feed. The forest looked so much better than the grass. We had just  gotten back from a run at the dog park, so both Nessie and I were tired. When one of the home owners said the goats were out, Craig grabbed the leash and took me up the hill at a run. When we arrived, all the goats were in the woods. Craig opened up the pen so I could run the goats back in. I rounded up some but they just wanted to run back into the woods. Craig decided to call Tammy, the other goat herder, for help. She brought Pearl, her border collie. It was a hot day and I was tired from running around at the dog park. Craig and I stayed back in the pen to hold in the goats I had gathered while Tammy sent Pearl into the woods to round up the rest. Pearl did a great job of bringing the rest of the herd out of the woods.

Craig moved the goats back into a pen with fresh feed to keep them happy for the night. After church the next day Craig moved the goats back into the pen they had gotten out. Before he moved them back into the pen to do some more clean up, he put up some taller netting along the forest edge. The steep slope makes the shorter netting less effective. Craig used the taller netting to discourage any goats that might think they could jump the shorter netting and get back into the woods. The extra seven inches does make a difference. Craig also decided he would stay next to the pen and keep an eye on the goats just in case. He read his book while Nessie and I took naps. No more escapes that day.

Once the goats finished the back side of the tract, Craig had to move them all the way back to the front. Craig had put up electric fencing along the people’s backyard fence, since some would not hold goats. But since he had to put up another pen he took down some of the netting along the backyard fences. He thought since the goats were going to be moving by fast that the backyard fences would keep them out. The idea worked for most of the goats. They followed him along the tract to fresh feed. But a few decided they did not want to wait that long so they stopped to trim up the low hanging grape leaves, and a few young kids squeezed through the fence into a backyard. When Craig came back to check he had to jump the fence and chase the kids back out of the yard. Next time he will bring in backup. He will have Nessie or I follow the herd to make sure everyone comes when they are suppose to.

What would he ever do without us?!

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