Paso Robles grazing goats for fire protection

April 29, 2021

Paso Robles is planning to begin grazing 300 to 500 goats next week to create firebreaks and reduce fuel loads along the Salinas River.

The Salinas River corridor stretches more than three miles from north to south, separating the city’s east and west sides and occupying more than 470 acres. The city has already treated 140 acres of vegetation as it readies for the fire season.

The Goat Girls have been selected to graze on approximately 70 acres this year, starting at the north end of the city and progressing south to Larry Moore Park. The project is funded by a grant from the San Luis Obispo County Community Fire Safe Council.

From May 3 through June 5, portions of the Salinas River walk path will be closed as grazing progresses through the area. The city is encouraging members of the public to visit the area while being cautious of electric fencing used to contain the animals.


Pigmy goats are great for mowing grass and weeds…barn goats rip grass out by the roots like a horse which can create bare spots in the soil adding to soil run off in the rain….


One might think there are some people who live in the riverbed who could do this work, but the goats are sober, on time for work, and are not eligible for SSI, aka “crazy pay”.


Perfect! Better than burning, (which is better than nothing! ) I grew up in the Bay Area, and knew this was the way to handle the poison oak and weeds. On the ranch up there, we lease fields to a rancher running cows. They eat – we keep the grass down, symbiotic perfection.

Francesca Bolognini

FINALLY! Our county is catching up with a technique used in the Bay Area for several decades. I was friends with a guy who owned a herd with his brother that took care of poison oak and the like all over that locale. It is safe, very effective and does not poison the land or wildlife in the process. All they leave behind is organic fertilizer.. I’m willing to bet it is also the most cost effective method as well. I am not a meat eater, but he swore by eating the flesh of these goats as a remedy for sensitivity to poison oak. This is a fine example of how more natural methods can often be superior to chemical or mechanical ones.

Now we need to bring back The BEAVERS, to recharge our aquifers naturally while greatly restoring our biodiversity, raising our resistance to fires with increased humidity and their natural firebreaks, resisting flood damage and restoring species like Steelhead to our creeks.



I would love to go and see the Grazing Goats. How do I get detailed directions of how to get there. I don’t think putting Grazing Goats in my GPS is going to take me there. :)


I can just imagine the city getting a letter from the RWQCB with a new tmdl for the salinas river. No good deed goes unpunished??