Goats at Work

August 21, 2019

Goats at Dix Park

Maintenance Innovation at Dorothea Dix Park

Starting this week, a herd of 20 goats begin to clear two acres of vegetation out of a pine grove at Dorothea Dix Park. This initiative is a new sustainable and cost-effective way for our Raleigh Parks maintenance team to manage vegetation in the park. As part of the ongoing effort at Dix Park to open up and activate the park grounds, clearing overgrown areas is needed to not only make the park look nicer, but also improve visibility and safety for park visitors.

The goat herd will call Dix Park home until the job is done, which is anticipated to take less than two weeks. To keep the goats safely inside their designated area, they are contained with a low-voltage solar-powered electric fence. The goats are provided a shelter and will work through the rain, unless there is a chance of extreme weather. A second fence is installed around the goats work zone to create an additional barrier to separate park visitors from the goats while allowing community members to watch them work.

The pilot area where the goats will be eating away vegetation is in the grove of pine trees between The Big Field and Williams Field along Blair Drive. Once cleared, this stand of trees will offer a shady grove for park visitors to sit and relax as well as create better sightlines between the two fields.

This vegetation management project is set to begin on Wednesday, August 28, 2019. For the safety of people and the goats, the City of Raleigh asks that the public stay outside the bike rack fencing and not touch or feed the goats. 

For more information about this and other vegetation management projects happening at Dorothea Dix Park, please contact Ryan Lerch, Natural Resources and Parks Superintendent, at 919.996.6548 or