HOUSTON — Dozens of goats are in hog heaven this week at the Houston Arboretum and Nature Center.
The goats were set free at the Arboretum Monday to gobble up as much of the overgrown vegetation as their bellies can hold.
The Arboretum is calling the pilot program "an innovative twist on urban conservation management."
While chowing down on grasses, plants and invasive species, the 120 goats replace the need for commercial mowing and herbicides.
The four-legged landscapers will work 24-7 to "mow" the over-growth on steep slopes surrounding the Nature Center's Woodway ponds.
"They will clear an acre in about 2 1/2 days of dense vegetation. And the main reason we're using them here at the Arboretum is for the steeper slopes around the ponds," Rent-A-Ruminant Texas owner Kyle Carr said.
Carr says his goats all have names and he treats them like "kids."
They'll be at the Arboretum through Oct. 10 and visitors are invited to watch them work.
Mansfield said if the pilot program is successful the goats might return later in the fall or spring.