About

City Grazing is engaged in community building and sustainable land management, working with local schools, universities, community organizations, municipalities, Fire Safe Councils, fire departments, residents, businesses, and homeowners’ associations’ to create fire safety, intelligently managed land, awareness of carbon sequestration, and well-being – community health,  healthy local land management, and planetary atmospheric health. How?

Community mental health and well-being:

City Grazing inspires our community directly with goats through our grazing sites, public appearances, school visits, and social events. We reach many urban residents, adults and especially children, many of whom otherwise have little access to animals. The soothing, positive, transformational effect is immediately apparent. Contact with the goats facilitates a sense of well-being and an opportunity for personal growth and environmental education. During COVID, our goats provide a safe outdoor encounter with the natural world even in the middle of our cities. Before the pandemic, we took goats to Bayview community events sponsored by the India Basin Neighborhood Association; Earth Day events at Bayview Opera House, USF, and UCSF; ACC’s Pet Pride Day in Golden Gate Park; San Francisco Friends School; SF Academy of Sciences; and many presentations at day-camps and schools throughout SF. We’ve brought goats to San Francisco Department of Public Works’ Arbor Day events and Friday Night Markets. We have also attended many local community festivals. After COVID we want to find ways to extend our public outreach.

Volunteers:

Even during COVID, City Grazing offers volunteer opportunities to work with the goats and in our public outreach. We mostly need volunteers at our home base in Bayview to feed, clean up, and socialize the goats with special needs at our home base while our main herd is out grazing. Willingness to work hard, get dirty, and have no fear of goats is definitely needed.  Self-reliance and attention to detail are also important, and of course, we need you to wear a mask, social distance from people (goat cuddling is still okay), and observe all possible COVID safety protocol. This puts you first in line for baby goat volunteer duty when we adopt new little ones (usually in early March, but occasionally throughout the year). No previous experience with goats or other large animals is needed, but we’d love to hear about your experiences if you have them. We ask that you come train with staff for three sessions, then when you are ready we welcome your help when you are available. Email us for more info: goats@citygrazing.com

Interested in corporate team building and work-related volunteer events built around clean up, feeding, socializing, and training with a twist? These will resume after COVID! Send us an email with your group size and specifications: goats@citygrazing.com.

A place for goats:

City Grazing provides a new home for goats in need. Our current herd originated with 10 goats up for auction; now most of them are retired dairy goats. Some get adopted when their owners can’t keep them anymore, and others are rescued before becoming part of the meat industry. We socialize and integrate newly adopted goats into the herd to be sure they’ll be happy working closely with the public in urban grazing settings. We currently selectively accept goats that will be a good fit with our existing herd. We are always improving our facilities with volunteer labor and grant funding so we can accept more goats who require additional care or a slower transition into the larger herd.

Making grazing more available:

We are seeking grant funding and partnering opportunities to provide fire hazard reduction to those who might otherwise have a difficult time getting what they need, such as the incredible community services through the Diablo Fire Safe Council.

Planetary health:

Carbon sequestration describes long-term storage of carbon dioxide or other forms of carbon to either mitigate or defer global warming and avoid dangerous climate change. It has been proposed as a way to slow the atmospheric and marine accumulation of greenhouse gases, which are released by burning fossil fuels. Carbon dioxide is naturally captured from the atmosphere through biological, chemical, or physical processes.

Grazing animals play a key role in maximizing carbon sequestration; concentrating livestock in small areas for days at a time so they graze lightly but evenly encourages roots of perennial grasses to grow deeper into the soil while discouraging propagation of invasive annual seed bearing plants, further promoting more growth of the perennial species. Adding a thin layer of compost following grazing creates unprecedented carbon sequestration in the soil according to research done through the Marin Carbon Project. We see huge potential for small yet significant gains in carbon sequestration in plots of urban land. We wish to assist in researching the likely environmental effects of long term small scale grazing by reaching out to soil scientists and environmental studies students to start testing on City Grazing’s pasture and other grazing sites. For more information please visit these sites:

Ecological Society of America:  http://www.esa.org/esa/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/carbonsequestrationinsoils.pdf

The Soil Story:  http://thesoilstory.com

Carbon Cycle Institute:  http://www.carboncycle.org/about-cci/

The Marin Carbon Project:  http://www.marincarbonproject.org