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OSAKA — Sheep graze as children watch or pet them — a sight reminiscent of a farm or zoo. Such a scene, however, might become more common on riverbanks here as the animals are used as an alternative to lawn mowers.

In a trial between mid-April and mid-July, two sheep worked the weeds on the banks of the Ushitakigawa River in Izumiotsu, southern Osaka Prefecture.

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