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May 22, 2009

State enlists goats to protect turtles

 

 

 Baltimore Sun file photo /1999

The State Highway Administration has come up with a creative solution to the question of how to cut the grass in the vicinity of its Hampstead Bypass project without imperiling the already-threatened bog turtle (above) and its Carroll County habitat: goats.

The agency is using a local farmer's herd of 40 goats to act as four-legged lawnmowers in the construction zone. It said traditional mechanical lawnmoers posed a danger to both the boggy wetlands and the reptiles themselves.

According to the SHA, it considered using cattle but decided they were too big to interact safely with the 4-inch bog turtle. The goats are scheduled to be on the job this month through September. Then, presumably, they go back to school.

Posted by Michael Dresser at 11:01 AM | | Comments (1)
        

Comments

For about 4 years in the late 90s there was a group of goats that lived among the trees between the US-29 S/I-70E ramp and Rt. 29.

Then, one sad day, Animal Control took them all away.

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About Michael Dresser
Michael Dresser has been an editor, reporter and columnist with The Sun longer than Baltimore's had a subway. He's covered retailing, telecommunications, state politics and wine. Since 2004, he's been The Sun's transportation writer. He lives in Ellicott City with his wife and travel companion, Cindy.

His Getting There column appears on Mondays. Mike's blog will be a forum for all who are interested in highways, transit and other transportation issues affecting Baltimore, Maryland and the region.
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