Google and Yahoo Both Use Goats for Lawn Mowing

    May 1, 2009
    Chris Crum

Google posted to the official company blog today that this spring, the company has begun using goats instead of lawn mowers to maintain the fields of their Mountain View headquarters. The idea is that this is a low-carbon approach.

"Instead of using noisy mowers that run on gasoline and pollute the air, we’ve rented some goats from California Grazing to do the job for us (we’re not ‘kidding’)," explains Dan Hoffman on the Google Blog. "A herder brings about 200 goats and they spend roughly a week with us at Google, eating the grass and fertilizing at the same time. The goats are herded with the help of Jen, a border collie. It costs us about the same as mowing, and goats are a lot cuter to watch than lawn mowers."

Google Goats

If this wasn’t a strange enough story, evidently Yahoo has already been doing this too. On Twitter, Yahoo tweeted at Google saying, "They like our grass too," with a link to a photo on Flickr of goats grazing on Yahoo properties. This photo was uploaded two years ago.

Yahoo Goats

"Once or twice a year, a large herd of goats can be seen just past our parking garage in Sunnyvale, grazing happily on the tall grasses of the hill (cough – landfill – cough) beyond," says Yahoo in the caption. "We have a special fondness for the goats and are always sad to see them go (which, based on their voracity, happens much faster than you’d imagine)."

Yahoo may not have Google beat in the search game, but they are certainly ahead of the game in goat mowing. It’s pretty interesting. We’ve been covering the search industry for years, and this is the first I’ve heard of any goats.