My Day With The Google Goats

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Adventures in Realtime

picture-11As promised, I went to go visit the Google goats today — you know, the goats that were brought in to replace lawnmowers in Google’s ever-expanding quest to go more green. I was told the goats would be in the big field at the corner Rengstorff & Amphitheater (on Google’s campus in Mountain View), and sure enough, I found a few hundred of them there. Apparently, the area was previously covered in 4-foot tall brush, but within a few days, the goats had eaten it down to basically nothing (as you can see in the videos and images below).

These goats, which were being picked up today and transported to their next gig (at Morgan Hill), will do this field-clearing once a year for Google, the herder on site told me. He was a bit concerned for the goats because a few of them got sick due to people feeding them flowers (which, apparently, are poisonous to them), he told me. PETA, would no doubt be concerned about the lack of shelter for when it was raining, and the electric fence that encircled the goats.

But all in all, it looks like the goats did the job they were brought in for, and were very efficient in doing so. Now, the question of if it cost Google more in both money and fuel to have the goats shipped over to the site versus what it would have been to pay some people to mow the lawn, is a different question. But hey, nevermind that, cute friendly goats!

Check out some pictures below and two videos below that. The Qik video has some more substance, but is much longer and is pretty hard to hear at points due to the wind.

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http://qik.com/swfs/qikPlayer4.swf

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