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Breckenridge, Frisco to borrow weed-eaters
Summit Daily News | July 14, 2001

FRISCO -After seeing how well the noxious weed-munching goats did on the Old Dillon Reservoir and the northwest shore of Lake Dillon, Frisco and Breckenridge want in on the act.

"The county's kind of going goat-crazy," said Paul Schreiner, director of the county's noxious weed program. "The program's going really well, the goats are well-behaved and they're eating like mad."

The goats were brought here by Lani Lamming, who rents the ruminants to municipalities to eat non-native weeds. Summit County has populations of leafy spurge, Canada and musk thistle and spotted knapweed threatening to overtake native flowers, grasses and weeds. So far, the goats have consumed about 27 acres of noxious plants.

The goats, which were originally expected to stay here two weeks and graze along the western shore of Lake Dillon, will now make forays to Frisco and Breckenridge to munch on weeds within the town limits. Currently, they're eating weeds behind Q4U Barbecue in Frisco and will be herded to the Blue River inlet for three to four days. Then they will be moved to Cucumber Gulch and the Breckenridge Ski Area's Peak 8 parking lot early next week.

The goats have attracted hundreds of people each day to chat with goatherds.

"We're pretty happy with the way the goats are chewing happily on things," Schreiner said. "And we're pretty darn excited to see how it all works out."

Schreiner is reseeding the areas through which the goats pass, and gearing up to release rosette-eating weevils, a non-native insect that only eat musk and plumeless thistle. The bugs will be released along the shores and on the lake's islands.

"They'd starve before they eat our native thistle," Schreiner said. "And for us weed nerds, that native species are what we're trying to preserve."



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