Animals

Goats Help Save Reagan Library From Wildfires

See how they've become part of the effort to protect buildings and homes from fires in California.


A herd of hungry goats were part of the effort to save the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library near Simi Valley in Southern California, where a wildfire has threatened buildings and homes. Check out this video to see how close the fire came to the building, which houses the graves of the nation's 40th president and first lady Nancy Regan, along with historic documents and personal effects:

No, the goats didn't actually fight the fire -- brave firefighters on the ground and constant aircraft water-drops did that. The goats helped prevent the wildfire from easily reaching the library grounds by creating -- or more to the point eating -- a fire break around the property back in May of this year.

The charred hillside opposite the museum shows how close the fire got to the facility, which houses the late president's Air Force One aircraftRonald Reagan Presidential Museum

As Reagan library spokeswoman Melissa Giller explained to Sparkt, the library is surrounded by hills covered in brush that's a perfect fuel for wildfires. Since they're in the Ventura County fire zone area, each year the library works with the the Ventura County Fire Departmernt to bring in animals from a company called 805 Goats .

"We get 400 to 500 goats to stay at the library for about a month eating all of the brush around the entire Reagan library campus, essentially creating a fire break perimeter around the entire Reagan library hillside," said Giller.

805 Goats is run by husband and wife team Scott and Emily Morris. They rent out herds of goats to eat vegetation on hillsides and other places that aren't easily cleared by people. They've worked for homeowners associations, clearing brush around neighborhoods and other buildings.

All the folks at the Reagan Library know is that they're relieved the fire that threatened their facility is now out, and they're thankful to the firefighters -- and the goats -- for preserving an important piece of history. "One of the firefighters mentioned that they do believe the goats' fire line helped them fight this fire," Giller told CNN . "They just proved today how useful they really are."

You can support recovery efforts in Ventura County by clicking here for a link to the Ventura County Recovers website, and click here for the Ventura County Community Foundation . Click here to find out how to support the Regan Presidential Foundation and Institute.

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