Harvey speaks: After we started off in early May, Craig had problems accessing the internet on the road. As a result both Nessie and I have not had a chance to get on the computer to update you on our daily adventures keeping an eye on the herd. Over the next couple of weeks we plan to do some catching up on a backlog of stories.
Our first project of the year was working for the City of Kennewick. The site had dense thickets of blackberries similar to the ones in Western WA. Luckily for Craig there were trails on both sides on the creek, so in most cases he just had to widen the trail so that he could put up the fence and people could still walk along the trail.
One of the big challenges in working in cities is there are lots of people. Most are friendly and like to watch the goats. But there are always a few that like to mess with things. Because of the blackberry and Russian olive thickets it was a great place for people to hide and do what ever humans do when no one is watching. Maybe it was because the goats were exposing these hiding places that people felt the need to mess with things more than usual. In one case someone decided to disconnect the charger from the fence. Luckily for Craig a nice young man called him on his phone and told him what someone had done. Craig was out working on the next pen so he quickly got the fence back on. He got creative and put up a short piece of netting up around the energizer so a person could not get to the energizer without getting shocked. Craig’s plastic pliers work great in this situation.
On another night, someone cut the fence. It was a clean cut so it had to be good pliers. They cut 8 of the 9 wires in one spot and 6 of nine wires one post over. It was a blessing the spot they cut was in a wet area so Craig found the hole before the goats did. Goats do not like to get their feet wet.
The goats did a great job of opening up the blackberry thickets and the project was a success for the parks department. Craig just had to spend a lot of time managing people as well as goats. Nessie and I aren’t much help in managing the people.