Oakland’s Goats Prevent Fires

This morning, I noticed hundreds of goats hard at work.  They are quickly munching through brush and grasses – and getting rid of the tinder that spreads fires.  As you drive on Rt. 580, glance over to the hills near Knowland Park.  You can’t miss the munching workers!

These goats actively tour the area.  Last month, I spotted them on a field between Rts. 238 and 880.  I wondered when they would make their next appearance, and am glad they have returned.

According to the Governator, fire season is “all year” now.  Of course, the 800 fires raging through California are mind-blowing, and very early this year.

For the Oakland Hills, let’s hope the Hiller flare-up is our 2008 fire story.  We have to be realistic, though, about the continued risks from man-made and natural sparks.  Thus our goat workers are welcomed allies, beforehand.

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Our Ducks Are City Slickers

Montclarion ducks seem to be city slickers, who are quite used to meeting visitors at the park.   Click on the image (or right here) – and watch what they do!

The video story of two Montclair ducks goes something like this:

  1. They are on dry ground, seeking sustenance.
  2. They have no trouble getting close for bread.
  3. They pant like dogs while waiting for treats.
  4. They grab for more, shocking the videographer.

What happened to genteel ducks who knew their place?  Who calmly ganged up on you, but kept their distance in the water?  They’re not in Montclair anymore.