- Associated Press - Wednesday, July 23, 2014

BOSTON (AP) - Boston is enlisting goats to combat poison ivy and other invasive plants in a city park.

On Wednesday, four goats began their eight-week stay at an “urban wild” along the Neponset River in the city’s Hyde Park neighborhood.

The goats are expected to feed on poison ivy, buckthorn, Japanese knotweed, and other invasive plant species.

Mayor Martin Walsh’s administration says the public can view the goats, which will be housed behind a low-voltage, solar-powered electric fence to keep coyotes out. But city officials warn visitors should not pet the animals since they will likely have poison ivy oils on their fur.

The city says “goatscaping” is currently used on Boston’s Harbor Islands as well as in Chicago, Los Angeles, and Washington, D.C.

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