Long Island Town Gets Goats to Prune Poison Ivy


Environmentally safe pilot program tested in Manhasset.

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A pilot program in North Hempstead is getting goats to help remove poison ivy from its property. Town officials announced the environmentally friendly idea in April during a Town Board meeting.


Town Supervisor Judi Bosworth said her priority has been to protect and preserve the environment. To do that the Town has initiated unique programs like using goats to rid poison ivy from its grounds.


“I am excited to add this new goat program to our list of innovative environmental initiatives, as they provide us with the means necessary to remove invasive species without the use of pesticides.,” said Bosworth. “I am certainly looking forward to seeing the goats in action.”


The pilot program will take place on a one-acre piece of Town property at the corner of West Shore Road and Shoreview Avenue in Manhasset, according to a press release from the Town. The goat will be fenced in and on-site for four months. Town staff will provide them with water and the contractor will check on the goats weekly.


“Goats have been used in various locations across New York State, including in New York City, and on Long Island, said Town Council Member Veronica Lurvey. “We hope they enjoy their trip to North Hempstead.”


Typically it takes at least two seasons of treatment to completely remove an invasive plant species. If successful and deemed safe, Town employees will continue the rest of the removal. The Town will then evaluate plans to hire the goats to clean up another portion of land in the same area.