FRANCE 3 BRETAGNE, LE TELEGRAMME (France)
PARIS – From Ernest Hemingway to Carla Bruni, the French capital has seen its fair share of notable visitors over the years.
But this week saw a surprising arrival from the provinces: four black woolly sheep brought in from Ouessant Island, a remote island to the west of France, to help "mow" the grass at one of Paris’s public parks.
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Ouessant sheep. Photo Eponimm
The Ouessant sheep are too small to be eaten, or for their wool to be used, says local TV station France 3 Bretagne. In the 1970s, it seemed they were on the verge of extinction, but they are in fact quite robust, which makes them ideal candidates for this experiment, known as eco-grazing.
Eco-grazing makes it possible to cut down on herbicides and limit the noise of lawn mowers, while saving on gas costs. There is also, of course, the fertilizing bonus! It will take about 45 days for the four sheep to “mow” the park’s 2,000 square meters, reports daily newspaper Le Telegramme.
The sheep are kept herded thanks to a high, electrified fence. If the experiment goes well, more sheep could make their way to the French capital.
According to France 3 Bretagne, anybody can try the experiment. A company called Ecomouton (Ecosheep) rents out “mowing sheep” in the Paris region. It costs about 240 euros per month – for two sheep – including delivery.