Welcome to Ladybug Hill Farm
Ladybug Hill is a small 8 acre
farm located in Rawley Springs at the base of the beautiful Allegheny
Mountain ridge west of Harrisonburg Virginia.
Once a horse farm, Ladybug Hill is now primarily a hobby farm with a
focus on raising Boer goats and Silver Fox rabbits.
Our goal is to produce robust,
correct, fast-growing goats that adhere to the breed standards set forth
by the ABGA. We would like to promote the Boer breed, as a sustainable
meat breed that has high rates of reproductive efficiency and growth. We
strive towards a show quality herd without sacrificing hardiness with
culls being used for our own consumption or sold to the local market. We
track ADGs for growth for performance data. We do a limited amount
of showing due to schedule constraints but we buy proven show
stock/genetics including several Ennobled bucks.
Find us on
I decided to get a couple of
goats to help with pasture management and weed control here on my horse
farm. Having another species of animal
that is a compatible grazer can be a great way to control weeds and
parasites. The farm is not conducive to bush-hogging and I don't
like using chemicals to control weeds. I have been very
pleased with the pasture improvement.
We got started with a couple of Boer/dairy cross does that a friend sold
to me. We intended to raise for meat initially but dabbled a little with
milking and cheese making. We have enjoyed producing our own dairy and
meat. Although our herd is primarily a meat herd, we do have at least one full dairy goat on the farm and have even
milked our percentage and fullblood Boers. We use the milk for any
bottle kids, and to make cheese and kefir.
Current Breeding Program: Show Quality
Boers with Top Pedigrees
Over the years, Ladybug Hill Farm has improved the herd dramatically and
continue to add high quality bucks. All of our goats are registered
with ABGA. With my
experience of breeding horses I understood the necessity of producing top
quality offspring with proven bloodlines and sound conformation.
We generally only choose traditional bucks with show records and good
temperaments. We offer a
selection of high quality breeding stock to buyers and occasionally have
meat goats or show wethers for sale.
Regarding conformation, I pay particular attention
to soundness of legs and feet. My ideal goat would resemble the
large, hardy South African goat that grazes over long distances and that
has a strong back and hind leg capable of allowing the goat to stand up
on its hind legs to reach higher browsing branches. The trend in
the U.S. show ring is to breed animals that can be posed beautifully but
that actually have shallow jaws, bad feet, a short hip, and an overly
straight hock. None of these characteristics are desirable and
U.S. breeders should consider the long range impact on the breed type.
I would like to see the successful show ring type to resemble a true
meat type with sound structure and optimal substance that can be raised
economically for its original purpose.
The goats at Ladybug Hill are raised on pasture
with very basic shelter from rain and wind. They are supplemented with
a good quality custom goat feed and goat mineral and hay all year round. I feed to maintain good condition but I do not
"push" the kids with overfeeding. I believe in raising livestock
in as natural a way as possible. Any goat that cannot maintain condition on my simple
feeding program is culled. I do not deworm on a schedule but based
on need. This practice selects for resistance to parasites, a highly
desirable quality in meat goats. Some does are only wormed at
American Boer Goat Association
Virginia Department of Agriculture and Human
Boer Goats Breeders Alliance of the Virginia
Saffron and my son
Photo by Jill Pariseault