COMMUNICATIONS AND NEWS FROM THE WEEK: September 24th, 2021
Meetings and Announcements:
• Please note that the date for the City Council staff retreat has been set for Thursday, October 7th, 8:30 to 4:30. Location will be Wakefield. To help staff and the consultant prepare for the retreat, please send your survey responses back to Craig Rapp by October 1st. Thank you.
• Save the Date: Fire prevention week is October 3-9, 2021. The fire department will be hosting an open house on Saturday October 9th from 11am-2pm. There will be fire prevention demonstrations, food and activities for all ages. A flyer with additional information will be distributed in the next week, but we wanted to get the event on everyone’s calendar.
PARKS AND NATURAL RESOURCES
Goats at Jim’s Prairie Preserve
Parks and Natural Resources staff are working with Great River Greening to explore the use of goats as part of a restoration project of Maplewood’s Jim’s Prairie Preserve in an upcoming grant package that would utilize LCCMR and/or Outdoor Heritage Funds. Our goals include reduction of brush surrounding the wooded areas, removing invasive plants and improving diversity of native pollinator-supporting plants.
Staff recently met at the Preserve to discuss options, including the possibility of using goats to knock back undesirable vegetation. Goats will eat shrubs, including buckthorn, plus weeds such as thistle. Goat hooves also work scattered native seeds into the soil, aiding germination. Once grazing is done, additional follow-up methods will be used. This site is already partially fenced which will make set up easier. The timeline for this project would begin in spring of 2022 but could be earlier if Great River Greening identifies other funding sources.
Great River Greening has partnered with Goat Dispatch and Minnesota Native Landscapes on past projects with good success.
Why Use Goats? (From the Goat Dispatch website)
- They are Eco-Friendly! No heavy, noisy machinery is used.
- Goats naturally fertilize the ground as they eat and leave their droppings.
- As goats eat the brushy vegetation, it provides control of mosquitoes and wood ticks due to reductions in their habitat.
- Goats prefer broad-leafed plants so brush and invading field vegetation is eaten first while grass is normally left alone.
- Goats have special enzymes in their gut so they are able to eat plants that are poisonous to other animals.
- Through their grazing habits, goats reduce the production of seeds by consuming seeding stems. Therefore invasive plant species such as Buckthorn cannot sprout as the immature seeds consumed do not survive passage through the digestive tract.
- Goats are agile and love climbing therefore they can graze areas that machinery and human beings can’t access.
NEWS FROM LOCAL PAPERS
https://www.startribune.com/across-minnesota-police-chiefs-are-opting-for-early-retirement/600098625/?refresh=true Reference: Retired Chief Scott Nadeau
https://www.twincities.com/2021/09/20/minnesotans-with-disabilities-fight-for-the-future-of-remote-work-virtual-accommodations/ Reference: Councilmember Nikki Villavicenci
https://www.twincities.com/2021/09/21/family-friends-of-20-year-old-gunned-down-in-maplewood-plead-for-the-publics-help/ Reference: Lt Joe Steiner
https://www.kare11.com/article/news/crime/reward-offered-maplewood-homicide-devinn-madley/89-a7c65488-7477-4e74-93c2-f795da9e932b Reference: Lt Joe Steiner
This is the news for the week. Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns.