Goats that work against fires are under fire

Boise, Idaho (KBOI) - Goat herders who use their stock to help cut down fire danger are catching heat from some who use the foothills.

There are about 500 goats grazing in the foothills off of Surprise Way in Boise. They've been grazing on about 45 acres of the city's land over the past couple of weeks. They're chewing down weeds like cheat grass and medusa head that burn easily.

Herders say some only see the goats as a nuisance because occasionally foothills trails they're grazing around have to be temporarily shut down. Trails near the area they're currently grazing in were closed over the weekend.

Lynda Linquist, the owner of We Rent Goats, the company that owns the stock, says she gets a lot of backlash from people who use the trails.

Linquist says they are, "Telling us that we can't be here, that there's no reason, that they don't think this should be being done, that they don't really care about fire because they don't live here, so it doesn't do them any good."

Linquist says someone even came and unplugged the electric fence put up to hold the goats in, then let them out. She says it happened twice: once on Sunday afternoon, and then again on Monday morning. Police had to work with the company to round up all of the goats and get them back in the fencing.

Linquist says those who do actually live in the area are always grateful for what's being done to protect their homes.