CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) — You might remember the small herd of goats that ate the kudzu around the Bar-B-Que restaurant on the side of Missionary Ridge.
You may not know it, but that’s now a thriving commercial business.
“It really depends on what I’m looking at, kudzu moves very, very fast, um the area behind me is a little over an acre, we did that in about 5 days,” said Jax Taylor, professional goat herder.
Former soldier Jax Taylor is now a professional goat herder. It was a way to make a living, born out of frustration!
“I got the news that I was going to get medically retired from the Army at 14 years, and I was pretty heart broken about that, so I went down to my barn and I cried, I had about 12 pet goats at the time and I said, you know what, I don’t care what I’m doing I just want to be with y’all and be happy, and so this was kinda what I came up with,” said Mrs. Taylor.
It’s a big jump from having pet goats, to developing a professional, goat based vegetation clearing company.
“I got in league with Tammy Dunakin and she’s been doing this for seventeen years up in Washington State, she’s the first scalable company for goat herding and vegetation management – so she franchised, and I was one of the first ones to sign up,” said Taylor.
Today, Jax Taylor’s herd is clearing several acres up near the top of Signal Mountain off Sunset Drive, where the terrain is very steep. It would be hard to get heavy equipment up here where her client wants to build a home. Once the goats get most of the vegetation cleared, that job will be a little easier.
“So we’re just moving up the mountain now at a very fast pace, because it’s straight Kudzu. You start looking at privet, you start looking at blackberry, it slows down considerably,” said Taylor.
The Taylor’s are based in Clarksville, Tennessee, and will take their 70 goats up to 4 hours away, to help people clear their land.
“We’re inching up, we’ll section off an area that’ll last about a day to a day and a half, that way they eat it completely down to the ground, before moving to the next area,” said Mrs. Taylor.
To find out more or hire her goats to clear your vegetation, check out: Rent-A-Ruminant.com.