Goats for Sustainable Woodland Management

Help us buy and look after 4 goats for Tortworth Arboretum.

Tortworth Arboretum is a community woodland that has been leased to us for social forestry – education, conservation, wellbeing, social and other events.

We are gently restoring the arboretum with hand tools, inviting in volunteers to learn about sustainable woodland management. So far we are a year in to the project and making a huge difference to the biodiversity of the 20 acre space.

We have been monitoring bats in the woods and are planning to keep bees, by partnering up with organisations such as the Avon Bat Group and Bee the Change. We hold bushcraft lessons, retreats and conservation events, and work with adults in recovery from addiction. We have a resident tree climber who offers tree climbing in some of our incredible veteran and exotic trees. As we open up more space we will be able to do more.

We have a problem with bramble regrowth and knotweed, both of which grow back faster than we can manage with hand tools. And this is where the goats come in!

Rather than using chemicals (which are well documented to kill bees and other chemical sensitive creatures), we will trial keeping goats to manage the knotweed and bramble. We belive that the goats will not only thrive in this amazing woodland but provide another opportunity to teach people about nature and sustainability. Everyone wins.

Thank you, we hope that you will choose to be a part of this experiment in woodland management using goats.

What do we need the money for?

Shelter. We need materials to build our goat shelter so that they have a draft free home thorughout the year.

Fencing. We already have most of the money we need for fencing, but we will need more to create the perfect goat-proof (if there is such a thing) home for our hooven friends.

Winter feed. We would like to have some money in the bank for their hay and feed to last the first year, while they acclimatise to the various tasty morsels available in the woods, and through the winter.

The goats themselves! We will purchase 4 goats from the St Werburghs City Farm in Bristol, who have been loved and cared for, and who will stay in touch with the project throughout the lives of the goats. They will as a result be animlas that welcome human company and be the perfect companions for volunteers and guests who come to the woods.

Vets fees. We need some pocket money in store for any potential health issues that they may have throughout their goaty lives.

And that is it!