Grazing Grass Podcast : Sharing Stories of Regenerative Ag

Join me as I sit down with the multi-talented Angela Boenisch of Highview Pastures, and we explore her fascinating transition from urban life to the heart of agriculture. Listen in as Angela shares her rich farming narrative, from her roots in dairy and hog farming to her current diverse homestead bustling with meat goats, cattle, rabbits, and layers. We cover everything from the joys and challenges of scaling up her farming operations to the integration of livestock with vegetable CSA, and even delve into how Angela's son's passion for rabbits sparked a new business venture.

In our engaging conversation, Angela and I also tackle the nuanced world of cattle breeding, highlighting the significance of temperament in farm management. Angela recounts her experiences with different breeds, such as the switch from Holstein-Angus crosses to more manageable lowlines, and the decision to move away from larger, aggressive breeds for the safety and ease of handling. Moreover, we discuss the importance of sustainable farming techniques, like summer slump bale grazing, and how Angela uses social media innovatively to market her farm products.

Wrapping up our talk, Angela and I exchange insights on the resources that have shaped our farming philosophies, such as Gabe Brown's "Dirt to Soil," and the crucial role of learning from a variety of agricultural practices. Angela's candid sharing of the hurdles she faced, like domain name squatting for Highview Pastures, is a testament to the unpredictable yet rewarding nature of farming. Tune in for a dose of real-world farming advice and the opportunity to connect with Angela's journey at Highview Pastures.

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Creators & Guests

Cal Hardage

What is Grazing Grass Podcast : Sharing Stories of Regenerative Ag?

The Grazing Grass Podcast features insights and stories of regenerative farming, specifically emphasizing grass-based livestock management. Our mission is to foster a community where grass farmers can share knowledge and experiences with one another. We delve into their transition to these practices, explore the ins and outs of their operations, and then move into the "Over Grazing" segment, which addresses specific challenges and learning opportunities. The episode rounds off with the "Famous Four" questions, designed to extract valuable wisdom and advice. Join us to gain practical tips and inspiration from the pioneers of regenerative grass farming.

This is the podcast for you if you are trying to answer: What are regenerative farm practices? How to be grassfed? How do I graze other species of livestock? What's are ways to improve pasture and lower costs? What to sell direct to the consumer?

Track 1: Welcome to the Grazing
Grass Podcast Episode 92.

I think there's room at

the table for everybody.

And I think that everybody can learn
something from every type of farmer,

Cal: You're listening to the Grazing Grass
Podcast, helping grass farmers learn from

grass farmers, and every episode features
a grass farmer and their operation.

I'm your host, Cal Hardage.

Track 1: On today's show we have
Angela Boenisch of Highview Pastures.

On today's show we talk about her
journey into goats, meat goats,

and rabbits, and layers in cattle.

She's doing a lot there and exciting
and find out what she's doing.

For the overgrazing section, we talk
about summer slump bale grazing.

I know we've talked a lot about bale
grazing, but I don't think we've talked

much about summer slump bale grazing.

So it's an excellent episode.

Stay tuned.

You don't want to miss it.

Before we get to Angela,
10 seconds about my farm.

And we're going to follow the pattern from
last week a little bit about the podcast.

If you support the podcast
by listening, we thank you.

Obviously you're listening or
you wouldn't have heard that.

Thank you.

Also, you can support
this podcast by sharing.

Sharing our episodes on your social
media, telling others about it.

We appreciate the word of mouth.

Also, we have our merch that
you can see at the website.

Not too much there, but a little bit.

And you can support us through Patreon.

And through Patreon, it's
a monthly contribution.

It's not very much, but it does
help us keep the podcast going.

And by being a member of the
Patreon, there's some added benefits.

If you go to the Grazing Grass website
and click on support, that's grazinggrass.

com, click on support, you can go to
our Patreon and see what we have there.

Also, I took a segment out of today's
episode because we ran a little bit long

and we got off on some meat rabbits.

And while that is not as grazing
grass related as I'd like for it

to be, so I took that segment out
and I pushed that over to Patreon.

Enough of that, let's talk to Angela.

Angela, we want to welcome you
to the Grazing Grass Podcast.

We're excited you're here today.

Yeah, thanks.

I'm excited to be here.

Cal: Angela, to get started, can
you tell us a little bit about

yourself and your operation?

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: Sure.

We've been at our place now for almost
four years, three and a half years.

And we've been growing the operation.

We're fairly small.

We have like 40 breeding does,
mainly Boer goats, some savannas.

Track 1: yeah.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: we,
I just brought a bunch of cattle to the

processors, so we're down to 12 head.

Um, and then we also raise meat
rabbits, and I have a vegetable,

CSA, um, and laying hens.

So just a little bit of everything,
but certainly the goats are the

centerpiece of the operation.

Um, and then we do also sell vegetable
seedlings every spring or well

Track 1: Oh yes.

Um, we sell vegetable seedlings

and then also like compost and
garden amendments that way.

Track 1: Oh, very nice.

Now, you said you three and a half
years that they're doing this.

Yeah, so we, um, at our old place, we

just run an acre and a half and we, I
grew up in dairy and a hog operation.

My husband lived in the country.

They had some lang hens,
horses, that kind of stuff.

Um, and then we actually both worked
on dairy farms in high school.

And then we, after we graduated and
we had a baby, and we were just like

working, you know, 12 to 14 hour
days, 12 days in a row with two days

off is not okay for being a mom.

Track 1: Oh, yes.

So we both went away from the farm.

You know, he, he worked there for a
little while longer, but then we both

went to college and, you know, had kids
during college and did that whole thing.

And, um, but once our kids got
older, we felt bad that we give

them that agriculture experience.

Um, my parents were still farming
initially when my kids were

younger, so they could go over
there and, and, you know, milk cows.

They weren't really old enough at
that point, but they could see, they

could be around it and they would feed

calves and do all that.

Um, but the highway went through their
farm, so they had to sell their livestock.

And, um, I just, we always felt like
we, you know, someday we'd want to, but

by the time we can afford to actually
do, you know, move to a place where

we could do some farming, just hobby
farming, that was always the goal.

Um, you know, we, our kids
were gonna be too old.

And so my son actually begged and
begged and begged for a rabbit.

And that's how we got started.


Track 1: So, so the rabbits
were the gateway animal.

was the gateway.


And actually I did not want rabbits.

They freaked me out.

I thought they were so gross.

And, you know, growing up
with cattle, I just thought.

I was so freaked out by animals
with pelleted manure that I, I

just was like, that is not okay.

Track 1: It's not normal,

not normal.

I'm used to like cow manure.


I, I was just like, I
did not like rabbits.

I did not want 'em.

So I finally said, sure you
can get rabbits if we raise

them for meat and eat them.

And I thought he'd be horrified.

And he goes, cool.


And he was eight years old at the
time and we had started homeschooling.

So I made him do research and put together
a business plan and he actually started

selling rabbits, um, to restaurants.


back when Craigslist was like
useful, before it was all scammers,

he would like put

ads on Craigslist.

And, um, he actually sold quite a few and
we started showing 'em, and not, not a

lot, but county fair and we went to a few

local Arba shows and, um, and
I believe it was then that.

Uh, following fall,
then we got laying hens.

'cause uh, we thought,
well, I said, well, why not?

You know?

I mean, now we got, now we've
got farm animals, you know.

Track 1: Oh, right.


um, and then it must have been in

2016, 15, somewhere around there.

I can't quite remember.

We got our first goats.

I really wanted, I had had

some health problems and, and had
really, um, done a deep dive into,

you know, eating clean and cutting
out all processed foods and, you know,

found out what some of my issues were.

And so we were really trying
to clean up our diet and

Track 1: Oh yeah.

kind of getting some milk

from a friend under the table.

Some raw milk and, um.

I really wanted, oh, well, at one point
they were out of cow's milk and she's

like, well, I got a quart of goat milk.

And I was like, well, that
sounds awful, but I'll try it.

I thought, if nothing else, we'll
use it in something, you know, to

Track 1: Oh yes.


we loved it.

It was better.

We expected it to taste Goldie,
and it didn't, and it tasted

better than the cow's milk.

We enjoyed it more.

Um, so then I started talking about
wanting to get goats and, uh, to

which my husband was adamantly
opposed and like very opposed.

He, he still wanted to have
kind of a nice looking yard.

And I was like, let's

turn every corner.

Let's turn every corner of this
place into housing livestock.

And he was like, Hmm, not so much.

So, um, once we convinced
him that we, you know.

To get go.

It's like, then it was just, you
know, all downhill from there.

Then we started

looking for land and the goats
for, for many years were just, were

were really just for meat for us.

And then I would

milk 'em after I wean the
kids for a little while.

Um, and, and that was it because we've
always had meat goats, um, instead of

dairy goats, but, which is nice 'cause you
don't have to milk them if you're gone.

You don't have to come home at
10 30 and milk a goat yet 'cause

they're fine if you don't.

So, um, but yeah, that's kind of how we
started with the rabbits and chickens.

And then once we, oh, and then
I started doing a very small CSA

at our old place and then it was
finally like, let's get outta here.

I'm done with this acre and a half.

We started looking for land and uh, this
farm run now is 25 acres, but actually is.

Way more than we were
initially looking for.

Um, and, and, the plan was actually
really just to do a CSA and still have

livestock just for home consumption.

Track 1: Oh yeah,

do a steer two every year.

And, and we love goat meat, so we
always would have goats to butcher.

And, um, and the rabbits,
we eat a lot of rabbit meat.

Um, and then I was like hoping to
build more of a CSA and, uh, we.

I actually did not want this property.

And my husband fell in
love with it and it was way

out of our budget.

So I was like, fine, let's make an offer.

They're not gonna take it.

Well, they took it.

Track 1: And there you are.

we lowballed 'em and they took it.

So here we are.

Track 1: Well, at least
you low-balled him.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: Yes.

So we stayed within our budget,

Track 1: Oh, well, good.


because we, we offered 'em what our budget

could handle, not expecting to get it.

So that completely changed our plan.

'cause I was like, well, I can't manage
25 acres with just a market garden, so

now, now we're gonna have to increase the
goat herd and, you know, get some cattle.

And, and really that's how it was born.

It was, it was.

Kind of out of necessity
to manage the land.

Um, and that kind of led me into what
do we do with this piece of land that is

in such poor condition, extremely poor


They had, I think the last time they,
'cause it was rented out as farmland.


Track 1: Oh,

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: to
us purchasing it, the neighbor rented it

and I think they must have harvested, uh,
corn in the pouring rain because it was

just rutted.

Oh, it was, you couldn't
drive anything over it.

It was just awful.

So it was like, how on
earth am I going to,

Track 1: oh yeah.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: land?

And that's where, that's kind of what
started us with increasing the livestock.

Track 1: Oh yes.


And at that time, were you, um,
familiar with regente practices?

Was that something you kind of
dove into as you got into it?

so no, like regenerative is not a word

that I was in any way familiar with.

Um, I, I knew that I'm kind
of a minimalist, right?

So I, I knew I

wasn't gonna raise things, quote
unquote, conventionally, right?

And I already had the, I, I grew up
in conventional dairy, and I, I do not

think they're the boogeyman, right?

I mean, I,

Track 1: Right, right.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: how
everything works, but I thought, well,

you know, with just a handful, like, I
wanna, I wanna raise things differently.

I, if I have all this land, I
want to utilize it as pasture.


That only makes

Track 1: Oh yeah.

So we, I mean, we really

went back and forth and.

Like the first thing was just, we
don't even know how to fix this land.

It is just, nothing grows except weeds.

And it was just like, how do we
even smooth it out and keep it

from like, I, how do we work it
to get it, you know, like fix it.

I knew I didn't wanna spray
the whole thing with Roundup

Track 1: Oh

I didn't wanna moldboard plow,

so I started like reaching out to
Extension and um, I had just found

working Cows podcast actually, and I

Track 1: Oh, yes.

to Clay Connery and said like,

do you have any suggestions?

And he actually forwarded me to a
consultant who was very, very nice and

did a consultation with me over the phone.

Um, and that, that conversation left
me with more questions than answers

Track 1: Oh yes.

because he just threw so much

at me and I just was not in that
like regenerative mindset yet.

So I.

Track 1: Oh yeah.

I just had so many things to

research, but he said, start
YouTubing Gabe Brown, like Jim


He gave me all these names that I'd
never heard of and it was, it was

starting, I think Gabe Brown, he's
very easy to listen to and he's

Track 1: Oh yes.

You know, just throws a lot at

you, but very understandable.

And those, I stayed up watching YouTube
videos till like one or two in the

morning for like three weeks straight
and I fall asleep in the recliner and

my husband's like, are you staying
down here sleeping with Gabe tonight?

Or are you coming up to

Track 1: Oh


angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: it
it, you just go down this rabbit hole

Track 1: Oh yes.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: an
obsession and like my house is a pigsty.

'cause all I did was watch
YouTube videos for a couple

Track 1: Oh yeah.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: it
gets your mind turning and you can't stop

thinking about, well, well we could do
this or we could do that, or, you know.


Track 1: Oh yeah.

that was my turning point, was

finding those YouTube videos and.

We didn't do everything
right, that's for sure.

Track 1: Oh yeah.


that, that is where kind of that

regenerative mindset came from.

I got zero help from Extension,
or even I had, well, and after

I found those Gabe Brown videos,
I thought I'll reach it to NRCS.

Well, his suggestion was to,
uh, probably spray it all with

Roundup and dis it to start


And I was like, I feel like I
said in my last email, that was

specifically what I didn't wanna do.


Track 1: oh,




so, um, the consultant that I had

talked to, really, I mean, his
whole thing was like, it's not gonna

be good in the beginning thing.

It's not gonna be good in the
beginning, but the best thing you

can do is just get livestock on it.

'cause they will heal
it, you know, try to get

roots in the ground, try
to get grass to grow.

Your cows will eat weeds like.

Use 'em.


Track 1: Oh yeah.

that's all they ate for

the first two years.

Track 1: Oh, yes.

and lots of weeds, but now they're not

that picky because they enjoy the weeds.

Track 1: Yeah, and they've trained
all their offspring to eat that.

So you're just building

or reinforcing that cycle to eat those?

I definitely see all the

calves are far less picky than

Track 1: Oh yeah.

princesses as I call

them, the, the older ones.

Track 1: Oh yes.

So on your cattle, what kind
of cattle did you go with?

Because you've listened to the podcast?

I'm always interested in what breed.

They're a hodgepodge of

Track 1: Oh yeah.

I could get.

So my first two steers, we actually.

Bought them, uh, as calves at,
but at our old house, knowing we

would be moving here that summer.


Track 1: Oh yes.


My son milk cows on the farm next

door and they do beef on dairy.

So those

Track 1: Oh yeah.

crosses and

Track 1: Oh, I

they were fantastic.

They, they were, they actually,
they grew really, really well.

They had a great rate of gain.

Um, I processed them
at 18 or 19 months old.

Now, since they were bottle calves,
they were on a grain starter

Track 1: Oh yeah.

probably seven or

probably eight months old.

Um, but after that they
were weeded, weed fed,

Track 1: Oh yes.

you know, weeds and hay.

That's all they had.

Um, they, they both hung at
like 750 pounds hanging weights

Track 1: Oh yes.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: 19
months, and I was pretty impressed with

that for a Holstein Angus cross, uh,

Track 1: Oh, yeah,

very limited, uh, good grass to eat.

So, but yeah.

Um, I've got an old Angus cow
that I bought from somebody.

I've got two, they're black.

Who knows?

Track 1: Oh

a little, a little Maine angio in 'em.

Maybe some Semial.

There's probably some Angus
in 'em, we don't know.

Um, I experimented with, I have
one heifer that I retained.

Um, she was from one of those mutt cows,
um, and she is half, um, red Devon.

So she's real, real short and stocky.

So these cows I have are quite
large, so I am breeding them

with much smaller this year.

I had a bunch of low lines born.

Track 1: Oh yeah.

So I'm trying to decrease that and then

I'll save back the heifers that I like.

Um, and probably, well,
one, one cow for sure.

I'm selling because, um,
she's a kicker and I am

sick of getting kicked,

Track 1: yes.


she eats too much hay and she kicks.

That's a bad combination.

Track 1: yeah.

That's two strikes.

You're out.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: Yeah.

But I am really liking how these
low lines are looking so far.

Um, I mean, they're only a couple, you
know, I had I had some born in May or

June and then some born in late summer.

Um, and so far they, they actually are
larger than I was expecting, so I don't

Track 1: Oh yes.

Oh, very good.

how much that low line is gonna

bring down the size, um, or

not, but, we'll, we'll see.

They're in the running for retaining,


Track 1: Oh yeah.

Well, very good.

get whatever I can


Track 1: Yeah, that's, we did that for
many years and my dad has limousine cross

that we're, we've been breeding to some
smaller breeds to bring down size, whereas

for my herd, I'm working with much smaller
cattle and he's still not quite there.

But most anything you bring in is gonna be
that larger frame 'cause everybody else is

Because that's what everybody has.

Track 1: yeah.

Also have to go with personality.

I don't have a shoot, I

have headlocks, but if I need

Track 1: oh, yeah.

is a lot easier to treat a, you

know, treat a friendly cow who
is not gonna be crazy on you.

Or, you know, if I could, if
they're having trouble and they need

assistance calving to just do it in
the pasture, because you can walk

up to 'em and they trust
you, it's so much easier than

bringing 'em up from the back 40.

When you're home alone, you know, it just,
so I, I really do, although that sounds

very hobby farmer ish, um, I really do
value their temperament and I really am

going to, you know, be more selective in
only keeping back the, the very friendly

ones, which sometimes is annoying too,
because they're almost too friendly

and they plow you right over, you know.

Track 1: oh, yes.

it, for me, it makes my life easier.

I am home alone a lot, and if I can just
deal with them in the pasture and not

have to worry about trying to get 'em up
and walk 'em across, you know, multiple

pastures, it's so much easier for me.

So I care less about the breed.

I'm trying to get the size down,
but I care more about their

temperament and their personality.

Track 1: I think that's so important.

And I think I've mentioned this on the
podcast before, but there was a few

reasons we went away from limousine
and we have really docile limousines

compared to others that I see because we
selected bulls for that for a long time,

but probably, I don't know,
it's probably 12 years ago now.

Time flies.

Uh, dad was loading out steers
that were eight, 900 pounds and he

was doing it while he was at work.

And when they get that big, they just got
crazy and he loads the trailer and they

hit the front of that trailer and turned
around and he couldn't get the door close

quick enough, and it knocked him down.

But he had a hold of the
door, so he pulled out of

the, pulled him outta the way.

I don't know how he didn't get hurt.

I mean, other than a few
bruises and his ego, uh, nothing

stepped on him or anything.

and and really that coupled with
a couple other things, but that

was really the, the moment where
like, we've got to do something

different here and we really focus.


Track 1: It's not, it's
not, I can't get hurt.

Um, dad doesn't need to be getting hurt.

And, so we started really focusing on
disposition then, and coupled with some

other things, we looked at some other
breeds, but, um, cattle are super calm.

We have not, not to pick on limousine
because I like limousine, but my

grand, my grandpa has limousine
and my uncle's helping him.

They loaded a couple calves and
we've got corral system, corral

system that it, we've got scales.

So they unloaded them here

and he had a steer get out of
our corral system, which is

built, I think, super nice.

In fact, we went back in, added
a bar so it doesn't happen again.


But I'm like, why my grandpa's 97?

Why is he messing with
cattle that are crazy?


Track 1: And, and I know when I
say that, not all limousine are,

but my grandpa's limousines are.

They were, yeah.

Track 1: Yeah.

It's like, whoa.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: Yeah.

And I, I worry, I probably don't worry
enough about it, and maybe I'm not

as careful as I should be sometimes.

My, I am, however, uh, accident prone,

Track 1: Oh

my husband worries about me a lot, so.

It really bothers him knowing, you
know, he was gone one day and I

needed to, to breed this one cow.

And he's like, you are not
breeding her while I'm not here.

She is insane.

Like, there's no way,

you know, she'll kick you.

And she did.


Track 1: Oh yeah.

I don't know why I didn't have the

nose leader on her in the first place,

Track 1: Oh


but you know, he, he, he does not like

that I, you know, breed cows when he
is not around, but it's like, well, I

can't necessarily wait till you're home.


you know, it, it, it, having those docile
ones just makes such a big difference

and it gives him peace of mind knowing

that I'm not laying there somewhere.

Track 1: Oh yeah.


I, I think that ought be a top,
um, criteria for most people.

Um, you know, now with your cattle,
you got those, you, you had to land

that really needed some repair.

Did it have infrastructure for
you or do you have to go in and

do some infrastructure work?

Uh, yeah, the, it was nothing.

We had, uh, we couldn't even like, get
onto the property because there was

this big kind of like tree line with
a steep decline or down to the road.

Um, so we had to, you know,
clear that out, make a driveway.

I mean, it

was, it was just a field.

Our land is, we have like four, three
or four-ish acres of woods, and the

rest was just all open tillable land.

Track 1: Oh yeah.

we, well, and when I say we, my

husband and my son, and the help
of a few family members who.

Were wonderful and sacrificed to help
us built our own house and the barn.

Um, my husband is a very talented,
um, in construction, so he did pretty

much everything, um, himself, and
I just like, when I want something,

I draw a picture of it and he just

Track 1: Oh, that, that
makes it really nice for you.

yeah, I want a barn this size.

And he says, okay.

I'm very spoiled.

I I bring him notebook,
uh, pages with pictures

on them and say, I was thinking
you could build this for me.

And he

makes it happen.

So he does a really great job.

Track 1: Well, excellent.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: So
we do have a a barn and it is not big

enough really, it, as we increase, we're
gonna need more hay storage and more

pen space for livestock for in winter.

So we do have plans to expand, but we
are not quite sure where we're going

yet with the expansion in terms of


So we're gonna, we're
gonna work into that.

But he needs his shop first
so he can have his own place.

'cause right now we're constantly
moving his stuff 'cause it's

in the way of hay or whatever.

And so we move stuff around a lot.

It's like the Tetris game, you know?

Track 1: Oh, yes.


One thing I don't think we talked about
quite yet, um, where are you located?

uh, we're Cascade Wisconsin, so we're

like north of Milwaukee, like 45

Track 1: Oh, yeah.


you all have a real winner to work
with as opposed to what I have.

I mean, we should have a real

winter, but this is our, I mean.

2019 was a normal winter and I think, or,
or 19 into 20 was like a normal winter.

And every winter since that, since we've
lived here, has been very warm, very

Track 1: Oh, yes.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: very
moist, very little snow, lots of mud.

I am not used to that.

I mean, the ground is not frozen here yet.

That should happen by, you know,

the second week of December.

We shouldn't be dealing with mud.

We have a little snow on top of mud right
now, and it's been very difficult to deal

with this because you, you kind of plan
like, good, as soon as the ground freezes,

they'll kick 'em back out on pasture.

They can roam around and they'll,
you know, there's a little green

grass under there and they'll,

um, you know, they'll pick through it.

It's not, I would say not
nutritionally significant, but

they're pooping on the pasture.

That's one less thing I have to clean.

It's one less,

Track 1: Oh yeah.

clean out there.

It keeps them nice and clean.

But right now I can't let 'em out there.

I don't have a big enough land
base to, to let them all out.

They would just destroy it,
it would just be all mud.

Track 1: Maybe you'll get there.

Now with the, the goats, are you
on the goats in the same pastures,

paddocks with your cattle, or
do you manage them separately?

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: Both.

Uh, so the goats, I start
them in the pasture.

'cause I usually have a kiting
group right around that time.

And it's

just so much easier if they can
access the barn because if I,

if I need to feed, you know.

If it rains.

'cause we haven't had rain
since we lived here yet either.

Um, but typically in May, you know,
the grass can be a little washy.

Um, then I can

feed some hay in the barn for dry
matter and they can bring their kids

back to the barn or the kids will
stay in the barn and they can go out

and graze and they just come back
and forth and then the water's right

there and it's just super easy for me.

Track 1: Oh yeah.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: I
start them in the pasture and they, I

let them be a little more selective, but
they pretty evenly just take the tops

off of everything and then I can run the
cattle through there like 10 days later.

Um, 'cause the goats just
eat the tops off everything.

And you can't, you can't even
tell they've been in there.

Track 1: Oh yeah.

you know, it's back to where it was.

And then I run the cattle through, and
that's part of my parasite management too,


Track 1: Oh yeah.

of those eggs have hatched out from the

goats and then the cattle go through
and hopefully eat some of those.

And for humongous, which is the
primary concern for goats, they

can't survive in cattle, so the
cattle stop the growth cycle.

So I actually let the cattle eat
it down quite low to try to get

those, like on that first round.

Track 1: Oh yeah.

and then I, in our woods, um, I,

I'm the only person I've ever met
who is able to get their goats to

stay in one strand of polywire.

That is a requirement to live here, one
strand and 11 inches off the ground.

And I use step and post.

And I put them everywhere.

They eat the lawn, they eat around
buildings, they eat in the woods.

They eat the fence line.

So the goats, once they've gone, uh, on a
light rotation through the pasture, they

then start working on all the other places
that the cattle don't have access to.

Um, and then this year, our neighbors
actually bought their land the

same year we did, but they didn't
move in until this past winter.

So this year, um, I was doing kind
of the edge of their property.

He said last year that I could
graze like those fence lines.

'cause he has mostly wooded.


Track 1: Oh

got, I think, he has five acres

tillable and 20 acres wooded.

So I, and.

I actually run the goats through his
entire property everywhere except the

little chunk that his house sits on.

Um, the goats

have grazed that off and then
they get one his woods is,

um, he has paths in his woods.

So I at least have a nice clear
path to run the polywire through so

I don't have to use as many step-in
posts like on the side of a hill.

So that is very, very nice.

Um, 'cause I have nice paths
that I can drive the four-wheeler

through and it's clean and

I'm not going through trees
and weeds and all that.

Um, but there was a tornado that came
through here in, I think it was 2018,

the right after we bought the property.

It came through our property and
his property, but he had a lot

of trees taken out, which really

Track 1: Oh

up the canopy.

So now he has way more brush and stuff
growing in his woods than he did even

five years ago because the canopy was
opened up so much by all of those trees

that were taken out by the tornado.

So it actually is like offered a
lot of forage for the goats in there

Track 1: Oh yeah.

thick and it's nice for him too.

'cause if he does wanna work on getting
some trees out, you know, you got clear

all this brush just to get to them.

Well, the goats took care of it.

It's unbelievable how,

how different that woods looks
after you run the goats through it.

So I, it's really nice that we clear
it out for him and he likes how

tidy it looks and, you know, it's,
it's just so much nicer to work in.

Track 1: Oh yeah.

it gives us 25 acres more

of forage for the goats.

So just one time around in the woods for
the goats, if you over browse that, you,

you won't have that browse next year.

So they get one swipe through
the woods and that's it.

Um, and then they're back
to the pasture for like a

fall, a fall round.

Track 1: Now, one thing you mentioned
about your single wire and step-in

posts, how close are you putting
your stepping posts together?

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: Uh.

Well, if the ground is flat,
which it typically isn't, um, for

the goats, I do like 15 paces.


what, that's probably different
for every person I count

while I walk and then step 'em in,

you know, between 14 to 16.

Um, and I usually kind of pace those
out and then I'll go back and where we

have little hills or lumps or whatever,
then I'll just shove other ones between.

And now some of the places that
we have grazed, we're grazing

more regularly on our property.

We've just put T posts
in, like in the corners.

So those kind of stay
there and are a little more


And then I just move my polywire reels
around with the step in posts between

Track 1: Oh yeah.

I was, I was anticipating maybe a
little bit closer spacing on those.

I'm training.

Or I have real young kids, then
I will put them much closer

until they have the hang of it.

Track 1: Oh, yeah.

once, once they, once they're all

trained, they, they don't mind, I
could keep them in with dental floss.

I have already run out of
Polywire and just used Twine.

Track 1: Oh yes.

don't even have the fence on.

Most of the time they just, I just put
it on the first 'cause I've had to, you

know, if I've got cattle in this one
and, and a breeding group in this one for

goats and bucks over here, well I only
have, you know, three energizers that

I move around with 'em with a battery.

And because I don't have a
electric perimeter fence,

Track 1: Oh yeah.

So I have nothing to like hook it to.

So if I need the, if I need the
energizer somewhere else, I just take it.

And my, my old does they all
stay in, they're, they're totally

Track 1: well.

Very good.

two weeks before without any electric.

And as soon as one gets out, you're
like, oh, I'll put it back on.

You put it on

Track 1: Oh yeah.

Turn it

all they need.

Track 1: Well, very good.

One thing with your goats, I think
you have Boer goats, correct?

mainly Boers.

Um, we started with two Boers that
were, um, it was a family that did a lot

of showing, and these were definitely
not the, their cream of the crop, you

Track 1: Oh, yeah.

um, but they, they worked

wonderful for us because we, we,

aren't necessarily looking
for that show type.


And when we got them, we, we, the
kids do, did show at the county fair,

like to get the experience and stuff.

Um, but I think we were really
blessed to start with two does.

They had great parasite
resistance, they had really good

milk supply, good feet and OTs.

Um, you know, we, they didn't
look so great when we got them,

but over time they looked better.

Track 1: Oh yeah.

Um, but I think we were just

really lucky to start out with some
great maternal does who they raised,

they always raised triplets on their
own and they did such a good job.

And that became our
foundation stock and then we

Track 1: Oh, very good.

So, you know, great fertility, we've,

we, we were lucky I think, to start
with some of the, the right ones.

Um, and then I do also have some Savannah.

They're Savannah, some of 'em are Savannah
bore crosses, some are Savannah, you

know, with like a little bit of Kiko in

Track 1: Oh, yes.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: I'm
hesitant to get more than what I have

because they're often, they take the color
outta your herd pretty quick so that white

is real dominant and you can't
just take a group of white ones to

the sail barn because they like to
sometimes sell 'em as dairy goats.


Track 1: Oh yes.

yeah, I, you know, you can put 'em in a

group with boars, but you don't wanna just
take a group of Savannahs unless they.

And you have to remind them that
they're Savannahs, the lady I

bought them from told me about that.

She's like, make sure when

you take your scrape list to them, you
know, at the sale barn that you write on

there, that they're Savannah Boer crosses.

So they don't sell 'em as dairy
kids because then they, even though

they look the same and they weigh
the same, they'll they'll bring

less per pound at the sale barn.

Track 1: Well, and that's
interesting about Savannahs

and through the sale barns.

I hadn't even thought about that.

So you wanna keep some of that traditional
marking of those bore goats on them?

'cause you want 'em to look Boers.

Group with Boers it, selling a
whole lot of savannahs will, can

sometimes get your price down.

Track 1: Yeah.

Gotta be careful with that.

Do you like your savannas
outside the white hair coat.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: Yeah.


I, and I've only had
them for about a year.

I've actually only had one
of the savanna's kids so far.


it, it's hard for me to really judge it.

'cause I've only had

'em, I, I bought 'em in two groups,
so, but they're, the rest of 'em

are all due, um, in a month here, so

Track 1: Oh, okay.


So far

Track 1: Yeah.

Well, I see savannas, uh,
for sale different times.

I'm just not familiar with them.

I've had Boer goats in the past and, um,
they didn't work good for my management.

So I've got Spanish does now,

the, the Spanish goats are really good.

I had kikos that worked really well.

Um, the Boer goats for me, and this is a
great point, you, you got some foundation

does that worked wonderfully for you.

And I think a lot of times whenever
we get started, at least for me,

I, I decide I wanted some goats.

I found some goats, so I went and
bought 'em and in hindsight, I should

have done a, some more research because
the goats I got in just did not have

the maternal instincts they needed to.

I, I probably could have figured that out
if I'd done a little bit more research

and made sure I know one farm, I bought
some, some goats from, they were managed

so intensively that I should have.

The people are super nice.

I liked their goats, but I should
have known right off, I'm not going to

manage 'em as intensively as they are.


Track 1: So, so you gotta be aware of
that when you're buying your, in those

initial animals and getting started.


And I've had a lot of other
people tell me that they have

had trouble with their Boers.

That they're, that the kids are
dumb and like can't figure out

how to drink when they're born
and that the mothers are terrible.

And I've just never experienced that.

Track 1: Well, I'm glad you have

at all.

I did have one.

Um, it was a retained doe from, uh,
one of those original two and she.

not, she did not.

She was like terrified of them.

She was like scared of

her kids when they were born.

And she was like in the corner shaking.

And I was like, what is going on?

Like, why are she had zero maternal
instinct right off the bat.

And I put her in the headlock like
six times a day and held her legs

in, in the air while I, so she
couldn't go anywhere, you know,

I held her back legs up so
those poor kids could nurse.

And then I kept a camera out there
so I could keep an eye on 'em.

And it took five or six days
and she finally took them

and she gave them just
enough time to drink.

She didn't love them, but
she didn't hate them either.

And against my better judgment, I
don't know why, but I bred her again.

Track 1: Oh,


Now she's seven

years old, seven or eight years old.

She's love, she raises
triplets every time.

She loves all of her kids.

So I don't know what got outta
whack there the first time.

But I, I was very happy 'cause I was
prepared for bottle kids that second time

Track 1: Oh, yes.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: now.

I would never do that.

Track 1: Oh, yeah.


I agree with my original boars.

If, if they kitted without
me here, it was a, a wreck.

Um, I felt like I had to be out there.


And that's one, one reason
I started looking elsewhere,

um, for different breed.

And I thought I could probably find
Boers that would work for me, but

everywhere I looked, I didn't see
people managing Boer goats in my

area, like I wanted to manage 'em.

Because they're not out there.

I have

never, I've never met somebody who's
managed their Boers the way I do now.


And, and of course I did things
different in the beginning.


and when you only have three or four,
of course they get babied, right?


Track 1: Oh yes.


the more you get, the more they gotta

stand on their own four feet, you know?

But, there's kind of two groups.

There's the people that have three
or four, they breed 'em, they

don't know what to do with the
kids 'cause they really don't have

a production system down and then
they're just trying to get rid of 'em.

Or there's the opposite end, which is,
the show people and neither of those

groups of people manage them anywhere
close to how I do and how I want to.

Track 1: right.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: it is
difficult because when you buy 'em in, and

I have bought some from show foundation
because that's my options, right?

I'm like, well, I can

Track 1: Oh, yeah.

to my bucks and hopefully get kids

that I will be satisfied with, right?

And then retain out of those kids.

Um, but they fall apart
when you bring them home.

I mean, they just

melt into a puddle and it takes.

I have found that they come back
around, it takes I think like

nine months to a year for them
to their body to like adjust.

Well they have to lose

weight for one 'cause they

Track 1: right?

Yeah, they are.


They're used to getting a ridiculous

amount of grain and a ridiculous
amount of protein in their diet.

And it take, and their, and their and
their feet are horrible because they're

growing so much hoof because they're on

heavy grain diets.

And then they,

you know, they all have
just terrible laminitis.

And so it's a process,
like, it's a lot of work.


look, they look like a million
bucks 'cause they're showy.

But then you bring 'em home and like
it in three months time you're like,

oh gosh, they look like a wreck.

But eventually I.

I get 'em back,

Track 1: Oh yes.


it takes a while.

It's very difficult to, um, and I also
find their offspring, anything born here,

even if they're from those showy does,
anything born here always does well.


Track 1: Does

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: part
of that might, might be my buck genetics,

but part of it is probably just the way
they were raised, you know, and they're

used to that environment.

Track 1: Yes.

Now, now one thing you mentioned
earlier, you milk some of them

after you wean the kids off I

Yeah, like just the ones that aren't

gonna kick me just for home consumption.


Track 1: Oh,

and I'm just milking 'em by hand.

I take a quart here and there to have,

you know, in our coffee, nothing.

And I haven't as much in the last
couple years when we lived at the old

place and I had a nice milking stand,
and those two first does were really

wonderful about letting me milk them.

So I milked a lot then, and, and the kids
were home yet then, so we, we made a lot

of like goat milk, ice cream and some

goat cheese and stuff like that,
but life has been too busy for that.

But I will occasionally, I will
occasionally milk some here

just after the kids are weaned.

Especially I have some that even,
even at a hundred days, they're

producing quite a bit of milk.

So sometimes I'll

just strip 'em out to.

Just like relieve a little
pressure if it looks like


Track 1: Oh yes.

too much milk yet.

But, um, yeah.

It's just for home consumption.

Track 1: I, I've, I've
threatened on the podcast before.

I'd love to get some dairy
animals and, um, I've, I've

talked to my wife about it and.

Dairy cattle, cow's, milk, they're
fine with, I mentioned about

goats, and they're not sure.

My daughter

and wife, they're not sold on that.

And I've also mentioned hair, not
hair, sheep, sorry, dairy sheep.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: So
I got my name down for a cross heifer.

So that, uh, my, my hope is that if
I do a Jersey Hereford cross, that

if I have a day where I don't milk
that, that calf can take care of it.

And I

also like the idea of, as I increase
the goat herd over time, if I

would end up with bottle kids, I
really need a source of other milk.

Track 1: Now, um, moving on from the goats
and the cattle, are you moving your layers

out through your pasture or do you have
a chicken coop you're keeping them in?

Yeah, so we have them.

In a chicken trailer.

Um, again,

I drew, drew a picture and
my husband made it for me.


Track 1: Oh, very good.

old trailer on Craigslist to buy

and then, um, made, you know,
made a traveling coop for them.

So we do put them in the pasture
and they follow the cattle,

Track 1: Oh, very good.


Do you have enough that you're
selling eggs with your CSA or is

it just your own consumption with

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: yeah.

I sell them out of like
a self-serve refrigerator

Track 1: Actually, as you said that,
I'm like, yes, because I was thinking

earlier, I wanted to ask you how that was
going, that self-serve selling of them.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: Yeah.

It, it goes well.

And I think people like that.

They don't have to talk to me or you
know, like there's people all over with

signs out that say Farm fresh eggs.

But the reality is like if you don't
know somebody, you're not gonna like

walk up to their front door and.

Like, hi, do you have eggs for sale?

I mean, maybe.

I don't know.

But that, that's not my personality.

I wouldn't do

Track 1: right.


Um, so like when I, you know, put ads

on Facebook and stuff, or not ads,
but like, when I post in a group, a

local group and just say, we have eggs.

They're in a self surf fridge.

Uh, please contact me the first
time you come so I can show you

where they are and what to do.

And then you never have
to talk to me again.

They drive in, they go, they go in
there, they take their eggs, they put

their money in a jar and they leave.

I mean,

Track 1: Oh

I don't even, the jar's

not even nailed down.

I, I figure if you need eggs that
bad that you're gonna steal 'em,

like, I guess take 'em because

I, I just haven't had a problem.

And they just write their name,
how many they took on a clipboard,

so I know, you know, for.

Inventory, like how many
I sold, um, you know,

Track 1: Oh yeah.

out my profitability.

Um, and yeah, so that works pretty good.

I do have a couple CSA people
who will get eggs, you know, with

their vegetables, but mainly it's
just, uh, the selfs surf fridge.

And then any overflow I have from
the garden that doesn't go out, um,

in CSA boxes, then I will put those
also in that fridge and just people

can just grab what they want, write
down what they took, and I just have

prices on everything and
they can self-serve that way?

Track 1: Oh, very good.

One more thing before we get to the over
grazing section, with your pullets, are

you buying day old chicks and growing them

and getting them to lay?

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: Yeah.

And then I, I grow extra ones.

And I raise pullets for other people.

'cause if you can scale that, it
brings your cost of production down.

And, you know,

Track 1: Oh yeah.

heat lamps anyway, you might as well

raise 200 of 'em if you know, instead
of 40 for yourself or whatever.

So, um, I do sell puls.

I, I do not like poultry at all.

So it.

This, this year I was not in the mood
for raising pullets 'cause I raised them

in our greenhouse over winter so that

Track 1: Oh yes.


It's unheated but I have kind of a
brooder that I keep covered and keep

heat lamps in there and then as they get

Track 1: Oh yeah.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: they
can come in and out of there as they like.

Then I grow 'em over winter so that
I'm getting spring pullets instead of

fall pullets because that's

my preference.

And then I typically just sell them, I
stockpile eggs and then like sell 'em

right around the first of the year.

They're easy to get rid of.

And then I actually usually don't have
chickens January and February because

my pulls should be starting to lay in
March, but I didn't do 'em this year.

There's too many other things to focus
on, so I'm much to my chagrin and

I'm overwintering chickens this year.

Track 1: Oh yes.

And what breeds do you
go with for your layers?

I get a variety of pullets to,

for the chicken loving folks
and I get all production reds.

You got,

I don't like 'em enough to.

I don't care what they look
like, they gotta pay the bills.

So if they, if they,


Track 1: right, exactly.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: and
I get, I, I will keep like a handful of

Easter Eggers or like a, a leghorn or
whatever, just so I can put one green

egg and one white egg in every dozen.

And it

gives it a little variety.

But the Easter Eggers, I won't
over winter 'cause they don't

produce anything in winter.

And I do keep light on them, so I get,
I get pretty good production in winter.

Um, 'cause I keep their light on a timer
so that that works out pretty well.

It really doesn't drop that much,

Track 1: Oh yeah.

Well, very good.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: Yeah.

Track 1: Well, Angela, it is time for
us to move to the overgrazing section

where we take a little bit deeper
dive into some aspect of your farm.

And today we are going to talk
about summer slump bale grazing.

So when we say that, what
are we talking about?

Well, the summer slump, it's, you know,

towards the end of summer where you're
not getting a lot of rain, you're dry,

you've really, you know, razed down your
pastures and you don't have any grass.

Now, it hasn't rained
since we've lived here.

So our summer slump has been
big and long every year.

We've, you know, we've been
in drought for, for so long.

So, I basically park, kind of park
'em in an area that looks, you know,

a, a poor portion of the pasture,
whether that means there's not much

growing there or something I don't
like that's growing there that I

want 'em to destroy.

And I just polywire 'em into
that area fairly, fairly tight.

And then I bale graze in
there and they really just.

S stay in there for about 30 days and
kind of destroy it and it's dry, right?

I mean, it's, they're

not ruing it up, but they're
definitely kind of killing up things

that I don't want, you know, and
they graze it really, really short.

I have found, when I bale graze in winter,
I, you get all these dead spots in spring.

I've tried everything,

no matter, no matter how thin you spread
it, if you roll out a round bale or

if you put, you know, big square bale
sections down, that residue, it just keeps

everything from recovering in spring.

So you get thistles or whatever,
once you know, weeds wanna

grow there, or you just get a

burnt out spot where nothing grows.

It looks nice around it,

Track 1: Yes.

I'm not saying it's wasting it because.

Yes, you're adding fertility, but it
also steam seems like one step forward,

two steps back, you know, when I, when I

bale, graze in, in winter.

Um, but what I find when I bale
graze in August is that gives all

of that grass time to recover.

And it never completely, it
never completely dies out.

So I

will place, I'll place a round bale
or even a, a big bale, um, like

a big square bale in the field.

They finish it, you know.

Then I move them off of it.

And then I come with the chicken
tractor and I park the chicken

tractor right over the top of that.

Um, usually like four or five days later.

'cause I'm also trying to get a little bit
of, um, like fly control with it, hoping

that if there's fly eggs in
there, the chickens will eat 'em.

Um, and the chickens break up
any of that residue that's there.

I mean, it's still on the ground, but
now it's not in a big mat on the ground

and all the grass continues
to grow up through it.

if if there is any grass there, you know,
if it was in a bear spot, obviously not.


but then in those spots, because I'm
already putting those bales in a, in

a, a cruddy portion of my pasture that
I'm trying to restore, I then take, uh,

in September I take winter wheat and.

Grass seed and blend them together.

And I sprinkle it throughout where
that bale was and that residue

keeps the ground really moist.

Um, so that everything germinates.

And then

I've got grass seeds starting to grow
and winter wheat, and now I'll have

that winter wheat there in spring
when I bring 'em through to graze.

So I'm not wasting out
like this burnt out spot

Track 1: Oh yeah.

growing because it got all

trampled and you know, the hay gets
matted and nothing grows there.

So now I'm not like wasting that.

And I just get, I don't use like
winter wheat seed, I just get bin run

wheat for like $6 for a 50 pound bag

Track 1: Oh yeah.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: I'm,

and it works.

It works just fine.

So I feel like it.

It seems everything seems to
recover so much better when I'm

bale grazing in August than versus
when I'm doing winter bale grazing.



did rain one one time this year while I
was, one time in August when it rained.

Um, and I did leave it, they were ready
to get fed, but I didn't like move the,

the bale ring to a new place because it
was getting muddled up and they were,

you know, making the ground muddy.

So I didn't want 'em to
destroy yet another place.

Track 1: Oh yeah.

that, um, that circle actually

caught right up with the rest of 'em.

Um, and I've got winter wheat
growing in it and it looks great.

And when you go out in that back
pasture where I bale grazed 'em

during the summer slump this
year, that whole pasture is just.


Track 1: Oh

you can see where I set every single

bale, it looks like a million bucks.

The grass seed came up wonderful.

And I'm like so happy with how it looks.

And so this is my second year doing that.

When I did it last year, I had 'em in a
much smaller area and that was very bare.

We have very, we have no
tot soil in some places.

We're in the Kettle Marines, so
there's a lot of like glacial deposits.

So we like, we

have like basically a gravel pit in
the middle of one of our pastures with

like, uh, an eighth
inch of topsoil over it.

Um, and it was on that hill that I
really wanted to get grass growing.

'cause not, I mean,

you would get a little bit of green
stuff growing on there in like May and

June and then it was done for the year.

There's a really odd species of
grass that grows on top of that.

I have, I can't identify it, I don't
know what it is, but the grass, the

cattle love it and they eat it down.


like down to the soil.

Um, but I wanted something other than
just that weird grass growing there.

I did the same thing last year.

I didn't have the chickens on it 'cause.

I couldn't figure out how to get the
tractor on there without it rolling

away or tipping over, you know, it
wasn't the best place to put it, but

just seeing what a difference their
urine and manure and that waste made.

And just seeing this year how
much grass is growing on this

really sandy area with no topsoil.

I mean, it, it looks better
than the rest of the pasture.

So it was

like, ooh, that, I mean, I, I was hoping
it was gonna work, but I, I didn't know.


But after I saw it for that first
year, it really just completely

renovated that portion of the pasture.

So that is kind of gonna be my new
way of renovating portions is kind of

that, that summer slump bale grazing.

And that allows me time, you know,
when it's not raining, I, I'm

either gonna have to feed hay now,
or I'm gonna have to feed hay.

In, you know, later in fall, early winter.

So, you know, I figure why, why not just
do it so it can recover a little quicker?

And, um, it gives my, the rest of
my pastures time to catch up, um,

and grow a little taller so I can
get another full graze off the farm

instead of kind of, if I ran 'em
back through in August, I'd be done.

You know, and they would be eating
basically a lot of, um, golden rod

at that point, which they don't

particularly care for.

Track 1: With the, the summer slump
bell grazing, I think it's a wonderful

idea and it's something I don't
see anyone do, like Pete on just a

few acres on his YouTube channel.

I love Pete.

He does, you know, during the summer when
he gets low on grass, he brings those

cows into his lots and he will feed hay.

If we're short on grass, we're
not helping our situation.

We either got a destock

or let's pin up, pin 'em up, sacrifice
paddock, and feed some hay and let

the grass recover out there if we're
getting too short because it's dry.

And I see so many of my neighbors that.

Maybe they should try it too.

I haven't done it, but I love the idea of
it and I think that if I get into a place,

like you said, let's take that summertime
when it's dry, feed some hay out there,

ground's gonna recover a little bit faster
than when we're doing it in winter, but

we're still gonna have to feed the hay.

We're just changing the
timing of feeding the hay,

Right, exactly.

And hopefully getting a little
more out of the forage that's

still in the pasture.

That could be grazed.

I mean,

the hope, the hope is always
that eventually it'll rain.


Track 1: Right.

it hasn't done that in the last three

years, but some year while I am bale
grazing in August, it will probably rain.

Track 1: Yes.

Inevitably it will have

to rain at some point.

Track 1: It'll have to.



Well, wonderful.


Angela, let's transition.

I, and you know, I listen to my
podcast, I edit them, and I'm

like, I say transition every time.

Let's move on to the
famous four questions.

Same four questions we
ask of all of our guests.

Our first question, what is your favorite
grazing grass related book or resource?

So I thought about this a really long

time, and I don't have anything like
super different than anybody else says.

My, my favorite book
would be, uh, dirt to Soil

Track 1: Oh,


Um, I think

besides the sy part of that, that book,
just like, you know, when you grow up

on a farm and you see struggles the
way your parents struggled and like

that whole, his whole personal story
just like resonated with like, oh, the

struggles that you have in farming.


You know, and I, I, it was a good

story and a good way to explain,
you know, why those things

led him to make these changes.

But I mean, I would say
that's my favorite book.

I am, I am trying so hard to read.

What's the one that they make
you read for Ranching for Profit?

I can't, I can't,

Track 1: Oh,

uh, the turnaround.


Um, I am an audiobook person.

I fall asleep instantly when I read, so

I ha I, I pick up that book, I read
two pages, and then I, I get too

sleepy to, for my brain to comprehend
and that that book is intense.

So I, I really

need to just start over.

That is on my winter goals list, is to
start reading in the morning instead of

returning emails and doing, that's
when I do my emails and my invoicing

and stuff, and I really wanna read,
get through that book and start

working on working through some of
those numbers that they have in there.

Um, but in the way of
some of my most favorite.

Resources aren't necessarily grass
related, um, but very helpful in

the way of, uh, like for goats.

The University of Maryland small ruminant
program, they have an excellent, they

haven't done any, they have a YouTube
channel and they haven't done any

webinars in like seven or eight years.

But they have very good webinars,
lots of very good series that

you can go and listen to.

If you search in YouTube, university of
Rhode Island Parasites, you'll find it.

They have an extremely good video.

It's, it's, they have several
small ones, shows you how to

do a f matcha score, shows

you how to run your own fecal samples.

That that's how I learned to do that.

Uh, but they have one that for sheep and
goats is the best video I've ever seen.

It takes everything you thought you
knew about parasite control, you

know, from management to treatment.

And it, it just kind of incorporates
everything and, and pulls all

that information together.

So, especially if there's anybody new out
there, like looking for a good resource

on parasites, that is a, a fantastic
video that University of Rhode Island has.

And I also really like the
YouTube channel, , Sandy Brock.

She's a.

Track 1: Okay.

Sheep Farmer, sheepishly me

is the name of her channel.

And she is just a conventional,
um, production system.

It's all confinement, but

I think there's room at
the table for everybody.

And I think that everybody can learn
something from every type of farmer,

whether it's what you do or don't
wanna do or how you manage things.

Um, you know, there, there are things,
the way she treats some things on the

advice of her veterinarian, that my
veterinarian thinks is like, hmm, not

not the way she would do it, and that's
fine, but also if it's working on her

farm, in her system, that's great.

I learned so much and it, and it makes
me think about things, well, I do it

this way, you know, it, it just, it,
it's not necessarily a grass resource.

You know, a grass
related grazing resource.

But, um, I, I find a lot of value in
watching things, not just about how

I do it, but the way other people
do it, because I think you can still

learn from everybody in other systems.

Track 1: I, I think you're
exactly right with that.

Um, we can learn something from everybody

and and whether or not that's what you
don't do or actually, you know, a lot of

people say, well, the only thing I'm gonna
learn from someone is how not to do it.

I think if you dig deep enough there's
something there that you'll wanna do.

I think so.

And, and maybe those resources
aren't directly related to growing

grass, but they are related to the
animals that we use to harvest grass.

So I think those are excellent resources.

Um, the Maryland one I'm familiar with,
uh, university of Rhode Island, I was

not so I will have to look that up.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: If,
if you go to their YouTube channel, they,

they don't have one that's specific to
their small ruminant program, so it's

really hard to like navigate.

So you just have to find
it in the search bar.


type like in, in YouTube, just
find University of Rhode Island

parasites and it should come
up as one of the first videos.

Track 1: Oh, wonderful.

Excellent resources there.

Our second question, what is
your favorite tool for the farm?

So this also is nothing fantastic,

but it's our four-wheeler.


Just with, with managing the goats
on the neighbor's property and lots

of hills and terrain and stuff.

Um, I couldn't do it without it.

I mean, our four-wheeler
actually broke about a month ago.

And my, I had goats, I still had my bucks
all up, um, on my neighbor's property.

And the four wheeler broke down on his
property and I knew he could see it

out his back door.

So I, I text him and said, well, just so
you know, the four wheeler's sitting there

because it's broke, like, don't
wonder what's going on, you know?

Track 1: Y

he said, oh, I know you need it.

Why don't you come up
and, and use our a TV?

We're not using it.

It's just sitting in the shed.

It'll be there all winter.

So we've, you know, we, like, I
can't imagine hauling water up

to the bucks on the neighbor's

Track 1: Oh yeah.

without a four wheeler.


It's just so much easy.

It just makes everything easier.

You know, I, I do a lot of walking
with or without it, so, uh, I

don't feel lazy using it at all.

Track 1: Excellent resource.

I, I think I mentioned this just a
few episodes ago when we, or when I

was thinking about this podcast and
I wanted this same four questions

to finish the podcast up, and I just
thought it'd be a nice little piece.

This was my least favorite
question because I just thought.

I don't know what, and it, it turns out
it's my, I don't know if it's, yeah.

It may be my favorite question to
ask because the answers, because

I don't give much guidance.

I don't feel like it's kind of
wide open and it's interesting

where people go with that.

Yeah, I agree.

And when I listen to the answers
of a lot of your guests, I

think, oh, I love that too.

You know, like we,

we, a lot of us have a lot of the same
favorites, but how do you choose one?

You know?

'cause my

runner up is either a toss up between
the skid loader or my lineman pliers.

You know, like,

I can't choose,

Track 1: Yes.


many favorites.

Track 1: There, there is, it's, it's
always interesting to get that answer.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: Yeah.

Track 1: Our third question, what would
you tell someone just getting started.

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: So I,
I don't know if I have any great advice,

but I think, I think for a beginner.

You watch a lot of videos, you do a lot
of research, and you think, oh, I got it.

This is the way I should,
I should do it, right?

Like, this is what the gurus
are doing, this is what, you

know, and it might not work.

And, and that's okay.

You know, because finding

out what doesn't work helps
you improve in the future.

So I would just say, you know, bottom
line is be open to new things and don't

be afraid to try new things within reason.

I mean, you're gonna take a financial
hit when something doesn't work,

but you also won't know if you don't try.

You know, a lot of the things that I
find works for me is because I found out

what absolutely does not work for me.


it, it's, it's hit or miss, like
with the summer slump bale grazing.

You know, last year was
the first year I did it.

It looked horrible.

I actually thought I had made
a huge mistake going into fall.

Last year because I had spread seed,
not, I thought none of it was viable.

I thought I had wasted it,

but then I see it this spring
and I'm like, oh, it's gorgeous.

Track 1: Oh yeah.

it, it's, it's, even if you think, oh

gosh, I don't know if I should do this.

Um, just try it, you know?

And if you do something that works
for somebody else and it doesn't work

for you, that's, that's fine too.

You know,

it's just not always gonna work.

And don't be discouraged because things
can be discouraging when you feel like

you're throwing money away on something.

It doesn't work.

It is discouraging,
but it's the way it is.

You'll get there eventually.

Track 1: Yes.

Excellent advice.

And Angela, lastly, where can
others find out more about you?

angela-boenisch_1_01-07-2024_150937: So
our farm website is

and we do have a Facebook
page that's Highview Pastures.

Somebody bought
before I could get it, and they

don't, don't even have a
website, so it's annoying.

Track 1: Yes.

So we're Highview pastures

with an S on Facebook.

Track 1: Well, very good, Angela.

Appreciate you coming on
and sharing with us today.

I've enjoyed it.