Promoting Myotonics

Missy is leading her herd with sec- ond-in-command, STA Chime-In, a Texas myotonic.

By Rodney Davis

Most people don’t think about starting a new career when they retire, let alone becoming an ambassador. But before you think pol- itics and foreign governments, think goats. That’s right, goats. Today, Eve Williams considers herself a goat ambassador for the Myotonic breed of goats. On their tract of land just east of Austin, Texas, the post oak, black- jack and Eastern cedar make fine browse for goats. They named their ranch Webber’s Grove and purchased their first goats in 2007.

When deciding to stock the land

with goats, the Williams’ visited several different farms. “The only goats I had any experience with were two Spanish wethers,” recalls Eve. The Spanish atti- tude of “don’t touch me” was fine for evading predators but wasn’t quite what Eve was looking for in her goats. “I also knew that I did not want to have to wres- tle with a 350-pound buck in my old age.” So the search continued for a smaller, more family-friendly goat breed that could also earn its keep.

took a swipe at my leg and knocked me down.” All was forgiven when it was discovered that the “queen” was actually after the owner’s small dog that had gotten between Eve’s legs. “I later purchased Missy (Mystique) and what more can I say? I literally fell for these goats.”

Even after finding the breed of choice, most goat owners know that the journey has just begun. Acquir- ing goat wisdom didn’t come to Eve nat- urally, so she purchased all the back issues of Goat Rancher and began pour- ing over them. She also attended Onion Creek Ranch’s Goat Camp™ and several workshops offered by the International Goat Research Center at Prairie View University. Eve read books about goats and studied all there was at the time about goats.

Carolyn Dowell Ranch Feenix is a direct descendent of the fainting goat herd that Boone Heap brought to Texas in the 1930s.

Eve recalls being “bowled over” when she first encountered Myotonics — quite literally!

“My husband and I were standing under a large oak tree during a farm visit when Bending Tree Ranch Mystique, the herd queen,

12 Goat Rancher | February 2021

“When we decided to purchase Myotonics, it was at a time when the breed was on the threatened list of the American Livestock Conservancy,” she said. “We felt that the investment in the preservation of the breed was important.” The decision was made to join the Myotonic Goat Registry and soon, many

different breeders across the country became a network of friends. The friendships gave Eve the best source of knowledge about goats. While many people were supportive, Eve feels privileged to have met and been mentored by Dian Naumann of Shade Tree Acres.

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