Ocean Isle Beach Goats 1, State 0

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Submitted: Wed, 04/27/2011 - 3:53am
Updated: Wed, 04/27/2011 - 3:26pm

UPDATE: Gordon Myers at NC Wildlife says the plan to get rid of the goats has been put on hold indefinitely to gather additional information and seek public input.


OCEAN ISLE BEACH, NC (WWAY) — Have you ever seen the wild goats off Ocean Isle Beach? Well, if you haven’t and want to, you’d better hurry. The State of North Carolina wants them gone.

Ocean Isle Beach residents and visitors say the goats have been on spoil islands off the coasts of Ocean Isle and Sunset Beaches for as long as they can remember. Now that the state wants the goats gone, most people are asking why.

“I have no idea now why the state has decided they need to remove them,” Ocean Isle Beach Mayor Debbie Smith said. “Except the report that they were causing pollution, but they’ve been there for decades.”

Smith said the state didn’t contact the town before deciding to auction the goats off. Although the spoil islands do technically belong to the state and are not part of Ocean Isle Beach, their visitors and residents are the ones who enjoy looking at the creatures, residents like Debra Allen, who says there’s a better solution.

“If you reduce the population, there’s not going to be as much pollution,” Allen said. “I just don’t think you need to get rid of all of them.”

Allen says the goats are a tourist attraction, and visitor Dawn Bonagura agrees they’re definitely a novelty.

“I would leave them out there,” Bonagura said. “I mean, they’re fat and happy. Why bother them?”

She said the goats are like small cows, and she believes they were put on the islands to control vegetation.

There are many answers to questions like where did they come from? And how many are there? But one thing’s for sure: most people don’t want them to go.

“I don’t know that we’re going to lose much for them to be gone, but it’s just another beautiful animal that’s on the island that you can see,” Allen said. “We’ve got so much wildlife here. Clearly, they weren’t naturally wildlife over there, but they’re part of the wildlife now.”

“Maybe some farmer will come bid on them to another happy home,” Smith said.

Bidding starts Wednesday, May 18. The winner has to have all the goats and any other livestock removed by Friday, June 17.

Real property agent for the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission John Barbour is the contact for the bidding. We contacted him, but he could not share the state’s side of the story without media clearance, which he has not yet received.

If you’re interested in bidding to remove the animals, visit http://www.doa.state.nc.us/ssp/documents/specialbids/GoatBid.pdf.


  • emg188 says:

    If the goats are suddenly a problem after all these years, why not trap and neuter the males and then allow nature to take its course? This would allow the animals to live out their natural life expectencies and ultimately give the state what it wants (or seems to want). Yes, it would take a few years, but my goodness, how long have the goats been there up to this point?

    I’m just on the outside looking in, but in the absence of anything to the contrary, I cannot imagine why North Carolina suddenly feels that the goats are a true threat either to the state or to the eco-system they’ve adapted themselves to.

    My vote remains in favor of the goats.

  • Beefy says:

    Sounds to me like somebodies trying to sell and develop the land. You can’t do that with wild goats roaming. They pulled something similar on the east end of Sunset Beach.

  • bob says:

    Why Bid Just Cull.. Sell the right to hunt them… More people would bid on that than would to buy them… Either That or just throw seal bombs and they will swim to the main land and disburse them.

  • Guest945 says:

    we’ll just herd them down to the SC end of Bird!

  • Guest7777 says:

    A story about goats gets more than 4 times the comments as a crooked detective ruining a young girls life a few article down. Just let that sink in.

  • virgogirl says:

    What’s next, the wild horses on the Outer Banks? Leave the goats alone! They have just as much right to live there as anyone. Especially when half the folks that live there moved down from somewhere else. Come on!!!!

  • Commonsensenotcommontoday says:

    If their number is not the issue, then leave them alone and go down to DSS to administer mandatory birth control.

  • Robert says:

    What a dumb political idea. I guess we should also destroy or remove all the wild horses on the Outer Banks? These same politicians claim they support the environment and now pull something stupid like this? The goats are doing no harm, and not nearly as much pollution as those who frequent the beach.

  • Wade griffis says:

    We are truely in big trouble if this state has nothing better to do than worry about goats fouling the water.

    Anybody been to the beach lately? Have you noticed that people drink beer in large quantaties and then get up and go briefly into the water? Wonder why that happens?

    There is probably much more human pee in the ocean water than goat pee.

  • Robert says:

    Barbour is one of Gov Beverly Perdue’s staff. That explains the insensitivity to this issue.

  • Robert says:

    Another example of government gone wild. Guess we have Gov Perdue and her associate, Barbour, to thank for this. How ridiculous.

  • nate says:

    I hope whoever tries to remove those goats gets bit in the a**!

  • Guest: guest says:

    As a young child growing up at Seaside, we use to go to the intracoastal waterway at Sommersett Landing and watch wild horses run up and down the banks. They too were removed. It’s one of the happy memories I have of living there. The goats should be left alone unless they are harming someone. That is the price of over development, it’s probably all about the money.

  • Guestgoat says:

    aren’t on this island, they are in Raliegh and Washington.

  • guesty says:

    Those animals in Wilmington city council, New Hanover commissioners, Raleigh & Washington are jacka**es, not goats.

  • Carol says:

    Our goats may not be the same as the outer banks horses but the locals and the tourist sure like them. The politicians should leave our goats alone and go BAHHHHH themselves.

  • GuestLee says:

    What if no one wants to purchase the goats? Will the State kill them? I would say since they have been there as long as people can remember, they should be “grandfathered” as part of the island.

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