The History of Critter Ridge Hardy Boer Meat Goats
Because of our age and our health we have sold our farm and all of our goats. We encourage others to continue developing lines of Boer Goats that are very hardy and resistant to internal parasites. It takes many breeders working toward the same goals to make improvements in livestock. To insure that these efforts continue, in late 2012 and in January of 2013, we sold all of our full blood Boer does to breeders who will continue our breeding program. Since then we have maintained a small herd of non-registered Boer goats to control the weeds and sprouts in our pastures and to enable us to continue experimenting with some new, improved, pasture forages. We have also selected these non-registered goats for hardiness and resistance to internal parasites.
About Ken and Candy Ziemer
Ken(center) with (left to right) daughter, Kristine; granddaughter, Angela; and grandsons, Dean and Brandon; setting up a live Nativity Scene at Redeemer Lutheran Church in Mountain Home, Arkansas. Ken and Candy in next picture with their Lama.
Ken and Candy's Experience Raising Boer Goats
Ken and Candy love to farm and work with animals, especially goats. They have also raised cattle, but recently only had goats, a lama, a dog, several cats, turkeys, and chickens. Ken has always been interested in genetics and livestock breeding. Critter Ridge's goal was to breed a Boer goat that is very hardy and resistant to internal parasites. Internal parasites are a major problem with goats, especially in warm humid climates.
Ken has a bachelor's degree in agriculture from the University of Wisconsin with majors in Dairy Husbandry, Dairy and Food Industries, and Genetics. He also had spent four years working in agricultural and medical research at the University of Wisconsin and the VA Hospital in Madison, Wisconsin. While attending the University of Wisconsin during the late 1950's and early 1960's, Ken had studied the scientific literature pertaining to goats and has kept up with this information since then. Ken has over 50 years of experience raising goats having purchased his first registered dairy goats in 1962 while still a graduate student.
Candy's parents raised goats when she was growing up, so she has worked with goats all of her life. Ken and Candy were married in 1966 and purchased their farm near Yellville, Arkansas, in 1967, where they still live.They brought 80 head of dairy goats with them when they moved to Arkansas from Wisconsin. Thus they have over 50 years of experience raising goats in the Ozark Mountains of North Central Arkansas. At one time they had over 200 head of dairy goats. They started breeding full blood Boer meat goats in 1999.
Beginning in 2000, Ken worked diligently with The North Central Arkansas Goat Association, The Northwest Arkansas District Fair, The Arkansas Goat Producers Association, The Arkansas State Fair, The Arkansas Meat Goat Association, and The North Arkansas Meat Goat Association, in starting and running ABGA sanctioned open Boer goat shows and junior market meat goat shows. He worked with the Arkansas State Fair to design, purchase, and set up a goat center with new pens, and show ring for goats. He has also worked with the North Arkansas Meat Association to set up educational seminars for meat goat producers.
Because of our age we no longer farm, but we do write articles on meat goats and publish them on the internet.