Serious About Sustainability: Why We Use Goats for Weed Control

Serious About Sustainability:  Why We Use Goats for Weed Control
Whether you’re a home gardener or an ostrich farmer, weeds are an inevitable thorn in the side. Here at American Ostrich Farms, controlling invasive plants on the ranch is a critical part of ensuring the health and welfare of our birds. This is because certain prolific species, like mustard weed, are harmful—even fatal— to ostriches when consumed in moderate quantities.


Many common weed control methods come with their own drawbacks. Commercial herbicides are made with harsh, synthetic chemicals that negatively impact humans, animals, and the environment. While effective and convenient, the wellbeing of our ostriches and the spaces they occupy far outweighs these benefits. Alternative methods, like weed barriers and natural herbicides are impractical at scale. So, how does AOF deal with unwanted plants? Goats!

WHY GOATS?

Goats are an earth-safe, effective, and adorable weed management alternative.  These “four-legged eating machines” are among the earliest animals domesticated by humans and they have been used to clear unwanted vegetation for centuries.  Goats can remove invasive species that are not easily managed by humans, including those with stickers and thorns, as well as pesky plants such as poison ivy and poison oak, without ill effect.  

We have half a dozen goats here on the farm that are easily “deployed” to different areas to help keep weed growth under control.  Ricky and the gang are beloved members of our farm family that keep us smiling with their friendly demeanor and rambunctious antics.  We’re grateful that our goats help us uphold our commitment to sustainability across all aspects of our operation.

goats on the AOF farm


Also in Blog

Bird's the Word - Answering the Most Frequently Asked Ostrich Questions
Bird's the Word - Answering the Most Frequently Asked Ostrich Questions

When people find out you work on an ostrich farm, their initial disbelief is quickly replaced by an enthusiastic curiosity. It’s no surprise why; the world’s largest living bird is a strange and wonderful animal, and one that few have seen up close. Here are answers to the questions people ask us most often.

View full article →

aof wins 2021 pet innovation award
AOF Wins 2021 Pet Innovation Award

American Ostrich Farms (AOF) has been named a winner of the 2021 Pet Independent Innovation Awards.  The annual awards program recognizes companies and brands that are revolutionizing and advancing the Pet Industry through exceptional goods, services, and technology.

View full article →

raw marrow bones for dogs
Are Ostrich Bones Safe for Dogs?

Generally speaking, raw ostrich bones are safe for most dogs, so long as you’re feeding them the right ones.  Bones taken from the lower leg of the ostrich are sturdy enough to withstand chewing and are filled with densely nutritious (and delicious) marrow. 

View full article →

ostrich meat is now available for preorder

NOTE: We expect an overwhelming number of initial orders. Although some orders will ship as early as 5/31, fulfillment may be delayed until the first or second week of June while we catch up. Please wait to place an order if you require a more exact delivery window.

Thank you in advance for your patience as we dust off our fulfillment gloves!!