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Contact: Jennifer Gibson, 530-242-3457
Beginning Thursday, June 2nd, 2016, Whiskeytown National Recreation Area will utilize goats to help restore the cultural landscape at the Tower House Historic District and to treat hazardous fuels at other locations throughout the park. The Tower House Historic District, located between Clear, Willow and Mill creeks along Highway 299, was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1973 for its association with early settlement in northern California during the Gold Rush. Beginning in the 1850's, the native vegetation of the site was manipulated for a variety of purposes. Since this time period, an assortment of naturalized native and non-native grass and herbaceous species have invaded the area. In order to address these changes, the National Park Service is utilizing goat grazing to support the following objectives
·Preserve the historic structures and cultural landscape.
·More fully depict the character of the cultural landscape.
·Stabilize and preserve the historic vegetation.
·Stabilize and preserve the historic views/visual relationships.
After completing work at the Tower House Historic District, the goats will move up Clear Creek to graze around the Upper Clear Creek Picnic Aare and the facilities located at the park's Headquarters complex along John F. Kennedy Memorial Drive. The objective of the grazing in these developed areas is to reduce the buildup of hazardous fuels around structures and to reduce the occurrence of non-native weeds.During the project, portions of the park and some trails will be temporarily closed to allow for fencing to contain the goat herd.
Visitors are welcome to view the goats, but are asked not enter the closed areas or approach the goats or the livestock guardian dogs. Livestock guardian dogs are used to protect the goats from predators. These animals are not pets, so visitors are advised to keep their distance for their safety and that of the livestock. And as always, visitors must leash their dogs while in the park.
The goats for this project are provided and managed by Northwest Goat Grazers out of the Wallowa Valley in Oregon.Approximately 60 acres will be grazed during this project, which is expected to last four weeks.