HAPPENING NOW: Rent-A-Ruminant goats on duty alongside Delridge/Holden stairway

The first goats ever booked for West Seattle work by SDOT are now on the job – Rent-A-Ruminant‘s goats are at work along the Delridge/Holden stairway:

We first told you back on Friday about the plan for them to spend a few days tidying up the overgrowth that has created safety issues along this stairway, which was the site of one of the student-targeting robberies earlier this year.

We will of course be checking in to see how it’s going. Note that this is not a particularly spectator-friendly site – on either end – busy roads bookend the stairway (Delridge and 20th SW). Rent-A-Ruminant proprietor Tammy is on scene to keep watch over her herd. We’ll be adding more photos later.

ADDED 3:45 PM: Went back over to check in – here’s a bit of Instagram video, from through their protective fence:

Tammy tells us about 40 goats are on the job here – her first job of the season; she generally works with them April through October. In all, she has more than 100 goats; they’re based on Vashon Island.

18 Replies to "HAPPENING NOW: Rent-A-Ruminant goats on duty alongside Delridge/Holden stairway"

  • Northwest April 7, 2015 (3:41 pm)

    This is great I support clearing of public areas like this and by simply driving by and peering up the staircase could easily see the visual limitations. However is this the best use of our tax dollars when thru organizations like tree ambassadors we the community can organize similar work parties and do 4 x the work these goats can in a couple hours. I got a group together last spring and we completely filled to the max a large 8 ft tall at its highest point clean green container of a pathway owned by SDOT that parallels Fauntleroy way SW/ West Seattle Freeway. The people who volunteered 2-4 hrs of their time lived close by or regularily used ,like myself, the trail.

  • Linds April 7, 2015 (3:47 pm)

    The beauty of this goat clearing is that there is nothing to haul away (aside from actual garbage) and technically the brush becomes instant fertilizer right on site. My understanding is that goat rentals (from what I’ve researched for my own property) is fairly inexpensive, probably less than what it would cost just to haul away the garbage, plus it is saving man hours.

    I’m all for this and think the city should look into doing this more for clearing of overgrown areas!

  • K'lo April 7, 2015 (4:30 pm)

    Linds – you can contact Tammy thru rent-a-ruminate and she can hook you up with someone that has a smaller herd for residential clean up.

  • K'lo April 7, 2015 (4:35 pm)

    anyone interested in renting a herd of their own for residential clean up – Amazin’ Grazers is great! I used them to help clear some of the nasty, tangled stuff growing on the hill behind my house. amazingrazers.com

  • mrsMarty April 7, 2015 (4:46 pm)

    Just curious, how long will it take these goats to clear this property out?

  • Sarah April 7, 2015 (5:03 pm)


  • sc April 7, 2015 (5:42 pm)

    I think one advantage the goats have over humans is better footing for this steep sight!

  • Les April 7, 2015 (5:45 pm)

    I assume goats are exempt from the new $11 per hour minimum wage law in Seattle, but seriously what is the cost of this project?

  • ChefJoe April 7, 2015 (7:08 pm)

    Les, according to a MyNorthwest.com story in 2014,
    “Dunakin charges between $250 to $725 per 24-hour day for the herd, plus a small mobilization fee. It’s often far less expensive than hiring humans to do the same job.”

  • KatherineL April 7, 2015 (7:30 pm)

    “Based on Vashon? Surely they don’t commute back and forth on the ferry every day?!

    • WSB April 7, 2015 (8:01 pm)

      She has a trailer here at the site and I believe that’s SOP. But between jobs, it’s home, home on the range …

  • sc April 7, 2015 (10:00 pm)

    Hope WSB gets a photo when the goats “commute” back home to Vashon!

    • WSB April 7, 2015 (10:21 pm)

      While they’ve been enjoying a multimedia blitz today, chances are we’re the only ones that will be following up daily while they’re here. I would imagine they commute in a rather non-visual trailer, but we’ll see. The main takeaway I have from today isn’t even written into the story … I had to hang around at the bottom of the work zone longer than planned because co-publisher Patrick dropped me off, went to run an errand, and then came back. So I was still there when Tammy of Rent-A-Ruminant was talking with a visitor who was asking about her dogs, which assist in goat-herding … She said that if/when goats escape, it’s like marbles hitting the pavement … they scatter. I wouldn’t want to see that happen here, given the dangers of the roads on both ends. But it was a vivid image. – TR

  • bolo April 7, 2015 (10:20 pm)


  • Adrienne April 7, 2015 (10:42 pm)

    Thanks for the shout-out k’lo! We are down behind the Mt. Baker light rail station right now! Goats all over Seattle!

  • steve April 8, 2015 (6:02 am)

    We went and saw them last night. Very cute!

  • Kelly April 8, 2015 (1:28 pm)

    I love this story so much — thanks for the coverage!

  • Kathy April 10, 2015 (12:17 am)

    SDOT, maybe the goats could clear out the overgrown vegetation at the corner of the Alki trail where Spokane Street meets Harbor Avenue. That vegetation is behind a fence, but is on the SDOT right-of-way. It blocks visibility for people walking, biking and waiting to cross the street at that busy corner. A request to clear the vegetation was submitted a month ago but no action yet.

Sorry, comment time is over.