New York native Larry Cihanek came to his current very successful goat based business via advertising. He retired from his successful advertising career to Rhinebeck NY, with a goat herd, figuring on making goat cheese. Instead he got caught up in the invasive species management business and he now works 60 hours a week and makes a 6 figure income hiring out his goat herd to kill invasive species in areas where using pesticides isn’t an option. The video isn’t of Larry’s goats but another set of Euro Goats who in this case were hired to clean up Washington’s Congressional Cemetery. Given that Larry was in advertising and he has no video of his herd I think we can assume he’s so darned busy doing what he’s doing that it’s not necessary for him to put one up to get business.
It’s all possible because goats will at anything, including poison ivy, and it doesn’t affect them. Larry has, over the several years his business has been going, carefully expanded his herd as more an more park services and monument managements committees hire his goats to get rid of invasive species. The goats are kept within a defined area using solar powered electric fencing and they are friendly and industrious as they chomp their way through the plants they so effectively eradicate.
While they are on the job, park rangers and volunteers have to turn up each day and see that they are okay and bring them water. it’s not part of the deal that Larry is constantly in attendance. For an idea of costs, for the job of clearing Lincoln Park in Rutherford NJ which is 1.80 acres, the cost was $3,420 for a 2 week visit from the goats. Their job was to get rid of a serious infestation of poison ivy. To do the same thing using pesticides would have been more expensive, not environmentally sound and the goats were a lot more fun for everyone concerned.
Right now Larry’s goats are busy clearing up Staten Island’s Fort Wadsworth. This time the goats have to get rid of the vegetation which is obscuring the view of the Statue of Liberty. The biggest problem is the Japanese knotweed that can reach 10 ft high. However it is catnip to the goats who always eat it first because they love it so much. Now nudging 70 yrs old, Larry can’t quite believe how things have turned out in his second career as he plans to increase his goat herd to 250 in 2015 as demand for his ‘Green Goats’ service keps increasing. Congrats Larry