CHICAGO

O'Hare Goats Debut: Chicago Airport's New Weed Control Force Now In Action

08/13/2013 04:16 pm ET | Updated Aug 14, 2013

Some 25 new hires marked their first day on their new job at O'Hare International Airport this week.

Among them, however, are no humans.

A herd of goats -- along with a number of llamas, sheep and burros -- began grazing on the airport's 120 acres of property on Monday, according to NBC Chicago. They marked their official debut Tuesday afternoon.

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Goats, Llamas & More Debut At O'Hare

The animals, owned by chef Al Sternweiler of the Butcher & the Burger restaurant, will be free to munch through as much vegetation as they can eat in a pilot program that could be expanded to other city property if it succeeds, DNAinfo Chicago reports.

The animals will be separated from the runway by fencing.

Sternweiler's company was one of many firms that engaged in a bid war in response to the airport's call for an earth-friendly weed control force to staff the new program targeting tricky-to-mow areas of the airport's grounds.

Goats have also been used for vegetation control at Washington's Congressional Cemetery, at golf courses and at other airports including San Francisco International.

The pilot program is set to continue at O'Hare until the end of 2014.

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