Events & Visitors
Basin Goat Guild- Goat Academy Location: Lyle, WA
We hope you
take time to visit one of the many upcoming agricultural
conferences and educational opportunities. If you would
like more information on what is happening, please contact the
If you would like
information on how your group can visit the farm, please go to
our Farm Visits page.
Save the date!
We will be hosting an
open-farm day on July 13th, 2013. We will have farm tours
and information on all of our latest project successes and
failures that we will be happy to share. It will be an
opportunity to see the animals up close and personal.
And just a reminder....
as much as we enjoy visitors,
this is a working farm and we ask that you please contact us
prior to dropping by.
Other Farm News
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and we would love to have you get
more snippets of news through our posts. Please check it out and
consider 'liking' Conway Family Farms!
if you would like more information on anything you find on our
site you may contact the
on the Farm
Well, goodness…we missed an ENTIRE month of updating and it was
an eventful one! With fodder feeding transitioning, cheese-cave
work, more kidding, and our normal project list we missed
sharing so much. Hopefully we can get everyone up to speed in
First of all, the fodder feeding system is absolutely
phenomenal! We are so pleased with production and transitioning
that we can’t even begin to start. We were certain our picky,
spoiled girls would be slow to take to a different type of feed,
but we couldn’t have been more wrong! In fact, last night as we
were admiring our gals eating, we noticed the
alfalfa hay left untouched as they all devoured the fodder in
their feeders! They love it!!!! (I think it is partially
because it is fun to flip around while they eat!) We are
carefully monitoring weights but the current verdict is that
this is a 100% success! Our Fodder Pro mini system is producing
about 55 pounds of feed per tray per day. We are doing two
trays a day and feeding only in the evening with a supplement of
grass hay and a small amount of alfalfa to assure they are
getting the appropriate poundage of high protein feed based on
their collective body weight. We have not seen any change in
milk production (either direction) and the animals seem to be
thriving on the beautiful fresh feed daily. What a true
pleasure to be able to produce our own feed for our livestock!
This is such a rare opportunity for small land-owners and we are
hopeful and encouraged that we can share this concept with
others as an option toward more sustainability. Has it been
without some challenges? Of course not, but we are happy to
share the information that we have gathered in order to help
Please give us a call if you are interested in hearing more
about our system.
The big bonus of the fodder system has been the new
greenhouse!!!!! Shaun is so delighted with how it turned
out that he has proclaimed it is our best building project yet!
(I'm not so sure...I think our house is pretty cool, but the
greenhouse is certainly right up there on the list.)
In the barns, the lambs are all growing nicely. At first glance
in the pasture it is hard to tell the lambs from the ewes.
Of course with a nice splash of spring weather we are really
ramping up on projects. We still have the unfinished cheese cave
We have started setting the stones around the edge for the
terracing over the top as well as the stairs down to the cave
entrance. This weekend has an agenda of stone-setting for
me…***sigh*** …while Shaun works on shelving in the interior.
After a good deal of consideration, we took the plunge. We
decided that our pasteurizer-cheese vat was too small so we
ordered a new 52 gallon
pasteurizer/vat. As with everything in our lives, it seems that
this is a lesson in patience: 7-8 weeks of manufacturing and
3-4 weeks to ship it ‘across the pond’ (as my Dad would say),
as it comes from The Netherlands. We are
hoping it will be
here and running by the time we have our open-farm event on July
We have had a bumper-crop of girl babies this year; so, much to
our surprise we are considering selling some. We try really
hard to manage in a way that we don’t have any extra girls, but
this year seems to be one of those years that mother nature is
getting (yet another) laugh at us.
On the family front, we are proud to report that both our lovely
daughters managed to muddle through their first year of graduate
school. I sure wish I was reporting that we would see them this
summer, but research is calling Ashley’s name (well, research
and her professor) and Wyoming is calling Amber’s name , so we
might get a short visit, but bygone are the days of summers at
home with the folks. I guess Shaun and I are just going to have
to figure out how to do all this summer work more efficiently!
This month seems to be starting out with a nice bit of weather.
Hope that all our farmer friends are able to be out in the barns
and gardens doing what we love to do best. As always, we are glad you checked in to see what was happening
with us and we hope you stop by again next month.
then…wishing you abundant sunshine, time to put manure on your
pastures and perfect growing weather!!