San Francisco Airport Employs Goats In Its Wetlands (PHOTOS)

07/02/2012 04:47 pm ET

Guess what? Goats make better lawn mowers than lawnmowers. At least where the wetlands surrounding San Francisco International Airport are concerned.

SFO has hired a herd of (rather cute) bovids to eat the excess weeds near the airport as part of its annual fire hazard abatement program.

(SCROLL DOWN FOR PHOTOS)

The marshy wetlands surrounding SFO are home to two endangered species, the San Francisco garter snake and the red-legged frog. To protect the critters, administration found an alternative to its normal weed-whacker gardening techniques.

The goats are currently munching west of SFO's Bayshore property, between Highway 101 and the train tracks near Millbrae, officials said.

Charles Shuler told the San Francisco Examiner that goats have been used for numerous years to trim the marshland area. As the region enters peak fire season, it’s important to remove dry shrubs from the property.

SFO isn't the only major Bay Area company to hire goats for what officials have deemed an "organic weed abatement program." Google, the Exploratorium and the San Francisco Railroad tracks have all employed the local business City Grazing to keep their weeds in check.

The goats will be at work near SFO for the next two weeks.

"We basically just direct the goats to eat the vegetation,” Shuler said. “They do all the real work.”

Check out some pictures of the adorable farm animals below, and make sure to keep a look out on your next flight:

CONVERSATIONS