South African Boer Bok

Autumn Olive Farms is a family based operation in Augusta County. We have a dual focus model with a singular commitment to the health and wellness of the land, animal and the consumer. We raise the beautiful South African Boer Bok as an environmentally sound method to combat the invasive plant species problem while producing one of the finest and healthiest meats in the world right here in the Shenandoah Valley. The combination of the worlds premier, purpose bred and standardized meat goat with the fantastic forage base of invasive species here in the Valley provides a win-win situation for the land, its owner and the consumer.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter at Autumn Olive Farms...

Slow Roasted Boer Bok Goat Meat
At Autumn Olive Farms we enjoyed Boer Bok Shoulder Roasts for our Easter meal.  Clay slow roasted them on the grill and they came out delicious!  It was a sweet reward for all of our hard work! 

We delivered several whole goats on Friday that were going to be the centerpiece of some Easter celebrations.  Can't wait to hear about it!

An Easter Egg Hunt Autumn Olive Farms style!

We also had an Easter Egg hunt.  The chickens even got in on the fun. They were wondering about those strange colored eggs though. It was funny to see them running all around and checking them out before the egg hunt started.  They had a perplexing look on their faces!
Oops you missed one!  The chicken sees it though!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Cat on a "Hen House Roof" and "Tweens"...

Doug on the "Hen House Roof"
The chickens are at it again.  They have decided to abandon Doug's house and use the nesting boxes. It is a much better choice and one that Clay can feel good about since he spent the time to build them such a nice "complex."  The problem is that we have 6 nest "units" available and 5 hens want to use the same one.  Boy I thought it was loud before.  I had to close the door to carry on a phone conversation due the the squawking that was going on out there.  You have never heard such fussing from a bunch of egg laying hens!  It starts all over again once the egg is laid. For some reason they think the whole farm wants to know their business!  Reminds me of some people I have known. 

Doug has also decided to abandon his house as well and has turned the "nesting complex" into a "duplex."  The hens don't seem to mind and as you can see, Doug could care a less.  He just sleeps through it all.  Reminds me of some people I know! 

Louise and her "Tweens."
So much for having cute little fluffy Easter chicks for all of the company to see.  I don't think they will have any "fluff" left by Easter.  They are in that awkward "Tween" stage of their life right now. Fluff AND Feathers! 

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Boer Bok Peninsula...

Chloe assessing the flood damage and "keeping the herd safe."
So we had our goats on the lower part of the farm cleaning up around the creek and garden area.  Did not know that they would be on a peninsula after the storms yesterday.  We had over 2 1/2 inches of rain here on the farm.
Our electric net fence is tough!

The good news is that all of our Boer Bok are fine and our fence did not get torn up from debris.
What just happened here?

 They were nice and clean right after the storm. I don't think that is going to last too long!

"1700 feet of a potatoes lover's dream"

The other good news is that Clay and his dad worked hard to get this garden planted before the rain came.  This garden is planted in 1700' feet of potatoes including Yukon Gold, German Butterball, Russian Banana Fingerling and Kennebec's!

Almost, but not quite.

The best news is that the water only came up literally to the very edge of the first row of potatoes! The soil is wonderful in this garden and full of earthworms so it drains very well. 

Unfortunately, our neighbor did not come out as well from the storm as we did.  He came home to find that the South River had risen quickly, stranding his sheep on high ground where they were cut off by flood waters. The high ground went under as well so his 12 ewes and 11 lambs were up to their necks in water. Some were literally clinging to a fence with their front hooves and "body surfing" to keep their heads out of the water. 

While he was rushing to get a boat ready to rescue them the lambs decided to swim for it and the ewes followed!  None of us knew that sheep could swim! Amazingly all made it across except for his oldest ewe who was swept away. What an unexpected turn of events for just 2 1/2 inches of rain!    

Friday, April 15, 2011

A Sad day at Autumn Olive Farms...

160 on right foraging at the Frontier Culture Museum.
Our day ended on a very sad note yesterday.  We had to put down the first doe that was born on our farm in NC.  She would have been 6 years old next month.  

Her name was simply 160 which was her tag number.  We referred to her as 160 while we were thinking of a name and 160 stuck.  

160 at two weeks old.

We noticed that she was having a hard time chewing her cud.  After careful examination we discovered that she was missing 2 back teeth on both sides of her jaw.  Clay recalls that he found her chewing on a Hickory nut last fall.  This must have broken her teeth.  A goat has to have a full set of back teeth to properly chew it's cud or it's digestion does not work properly.  In this case there is nothing that can be done.  

160 as a young mother.

160 was a powerhouse of a doe and was a fine example true South African Boer Bok genetics.  She was very hardy and produced many kids for us over the years. She even gave us a set of triplet does this fall. We are thankful that we will have these does to carry on her South African genetic line.  Thank you 160 for 6 great years and all of the kids you produced for us.  Job well done!

160 working as a "Biological Control Agent"

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Food For America...

Autumn Olive Farms Boer Bok loving the attention.

Would you like some hay?
 These are pictures from the Food For America day that the Wilson Memorial High School FFA put on this morning.  Food For America is a program where preschoolers go around to different stations and are able to get a hands on experience with farm animals, planting seeds, sitting on a tractor and even "milking" a cow.  

The FFA students did a great job.  It is never too early to learn about where your food comes from!  I'll bet there will be interesting discussions at the dinner table of these preschoolers tonight!
This is a baby lamb not a calf!

Chloe and her horse.

Jonathan and his show lambs.

"Milking the cow!"
Chaz and s show steer.
Mr. Lawson's sheep shearing demo.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Boer Bok on the menu tonight...

Would you like to try some Boer Bok in the Charlottesville area tonight?  You can head over to Duners  which is located 5 miles west of Charlottesville in the Village of Ivy.  They have quite an impressive menu which changes daily and you can preview it on their website. Chef Laura and her staff are committed to serving the best local ingredients that are seasonally available, including our  Boer Bok.  Chef Laura prepared our ribs as Spicy Chinese Local Barbecued Goat Ribs with Ginger Cabbage Slaw.  Sounds wonderful!

You can also go to C&O Restaurant
at 515 E. Water Street in downtown Charlottesville.  Chef Eric has prepared a Biryana Stew.  It is Boer Bok stewed with Indian Spices topped with a Mint Cilantro Yogurt and served with fried Yucca and sauteed local Spinach.  Oh My!  C&O is also committed to supporting local producers by creating spectacular dishes using locally grown products.  


Friday, April 1, 2011

Our Boer Bok have gone back to their roots...

So I did a Google search on Boer Bok goat meat and found this article called "Why the World Loves Our Boerbokke."  It was in a South African magazine called Good Taste 

This is a description of the magazine from the about us section of their website. 
Good Taste is a glossy, highly visual, lifestyle magazine offering a fresh and entertaining look at food, wine, travel, luxury cars, art, interiors, books, etc.—in fact, all the good things that make life more interesting and exciting.
The editorial staff of Good Taste subscribes to the concept of graphic journalism––writing that should look pleasing to read, even before you begin. The articles too are written by some of South Africa’s best writers, on topics that are aimed at the magazine’s affluent market. 

I was reading along in the article and then I came to the 5th paragraph and was quite surprised!  Click the link above to take a look at it.   

I think it is a good article until you get to the last two paragraphs.  This does not describe our Boer Bok and if it did they would be on a plate!