Paying it forward comes as natural as raising goats for Randy Dusek.
Being a part of the Sheep and Goat 101 panel at the 2021 Texas Sheep and Goat Expo held in San Angelo Aug. 20-21 gave Dusek the perfect opportunity to share his knowledge of raising goats.
“I try to help keep people from making the same mistakes that we made when getting in the goat business,” said Dusek, who talked about the “Five things I wish I had known before I started raising sheep and goats”.
He started raising Boer goats in 1995 when they first came to the United States. They were an addition to his family’s traditional sheep and cattle ranch, Dusek explained.
“I was working for Texas A&M when I first saw the Boer goat,” he said. “I was intrigued by how meaty they were. I could see the value of adding Boer goats to our Spanish goats. I think that is what attracted most people to Boer goats.”
And it still does. Dusek met new producers during the expo.
“We had a good crowd of new sheep and goat producers,” he added. “The expo was very well attended. It was one of the largest, if not the largest, they have had.”
So large, Dusek said he and the other panelists Chad Raines, Alan McAnally and Robin Giles answered many questions after the session. Some were about internal parasites and diseases, predator control with livestock guardian dogs and fencing requirements for sheep and goats.
Dusek retired in 2005 and moved back to the family ranch, which is 15 miles south of Wall. He said he now spends most of his time with his animals.
“If you are going to raise registered goats, you need an organization,” Dusek said. “There used to be three organizations, but over time two have fallen by the wayside. The only one left is the American Boer Goat Association (ABGA).”
He’s been a member of the ABGA since 1996. “There is value in raising registered goats,” Dusek said. “I think the ABGA is doing a good job.”
The ABGA staff feels the same way about Dusek. In addition to being a former ABGA Board of Director, Dusek is always there to answer questions. “We appreciate all Randy does to help our members, our staff and the Boer goat industry,” ABGA Executive Director Katie Carruth said. “We enjoyed seeing him share his expertise at the Texas Sheep and Goat Expo.”