A Look at BART's Four-Legged Fire Prevention Crew

3 weeks ago 5

As occurrence information looms successful conscionable astir each points Bay Area, BART has deployed a peculiar task unit to negociate the substance astir its properties. But this unit doesn't usage tools.

The transit bureau is utilizing hundreds of goats to graze connected properties astir its stations and tracks, creating occurrence breaks amid the dense brushwood successful immoderate of those areas.

The four-legged grazers not lone assistance trim the accidental of fires sparking, but they besides are affable to the situation arsenic their appetites for vegetation let BART to importantly chopped backmost connected the usage of instrumentality specified arsenic state powered weed whackers, mowers and leafage blowers.

Courtesy of BART

BART is liable for providing h2o for goats that graze connected its property.

BART grounds idiosyncratic Josh Soltero says it's "the smartest mode for america to woody with the vegetation successful these areas."


The goats are contracted from Living Systems Land Management, a herding concern based successful Coalinga owned and operated by Michael and Jan Canady.

"We enactment the goats successful a tiny country and bash what we telephone a mob graze," Jan Canady said successful a BART quality release. "With a powerfulness weed eater, you're conscionable cutting it down, but you person to interest astir erosion, due to the fact that the basal is inactive there. The goats, they're perpetually eating wherever they're needed, everything, until you determination them determination else."

Goats are intelligent, playful creatures, Canady added, who instinctively cognize which plants they request to eat. At each location, a goat herder contracted by the Canadys stays with the goats 24/7 to determination them on to their adjacent stop.

Courtesy of BART

A goat grazes connected BART spot successful the East Bay. (July 9, 2021)

BART says immoderate of its properties are successful zones with overgrown vegetation prone to brushwood fires, and the goats are the agency's mode of proactively managing that overgrowth.

BART provides h2o for the goats, a herd of which tin portion 300-plus gallons a time and tin wide good implicit an acre of vegetation a day, according to Glen Eddy, BART's adjunct superintendent of Ways and Facilities. He said the declaration usually runs successful May-June and September-October, depending connected conditions, and the goats graze astir 35 acres retired of much than 100 total.

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