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Lazy J Bar Ranch offers colorful boer goat genetics

John and Stephanie Jung have managed to market uniquely colored boer goats without sacrificing genetic quality in their herd.

A man and a woman stand at the doorway of a barn with their goat herd inside.
John and Stephanie Jung have made both genetics and color a priority in their registered full-blood boer herd. Photo taken Jan. 18, 2022 in Mina, South Dakota.
Emily Beal / Agweek

MINA, S.D. — John and Stephanie Jung have an eye for color in their livestock, raising a uniquely colored herd of boer goats as well as Red Angus cattle at Lazy J Bar Ranch, located in Mina, South Dakota.

Stephanie Jung grew up around both sheep and goats and had a close connection to them all her life, prompting her and her husband, John, to buy a large commercial herd of boer goats in 2010.

A black and white spotted wether.
This year's kid crop at Lazy J Bar Ranch included a variety of unique color patterns, such as a black and white spotted pattern. Photo taken Jan. 18, 2022 in Mina, South Dakota.
Emily Beal / Agweek

“In 2004 I was exposed to the boer goats and kind of fell in love with them and took the dive in 2010,” she said.

Since that initial purchase over a decade ago, the pair have been steadily upgrading their herd by adding in cutting-edge genetics. They quickly began to fill their barns with boers and currently have a herd of 130 mature does as well as an array of bucks used in their breeding program on the ranch. Most of their does are full-blood registered boers.

Stephanie knew she wanted to incorporate color into herd, but in the beginning found it difficult to do so without losing genetic soundness when purchasing colorful boers. However, after searching, the Jungs were able to find a source to purchase from that had exceptional genetics along with intriguing color.

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Black and white doe
A black and white patterned kid from the 2022 kid crop cuddles up with its mother for warmth. Photo taken January 18, 2022 in Mina, South Dakota.
Emily Beal / Agweek

“I like to go against all odds I guess and have color. We raise Red Angus cattle as well, so having a red goat was probably at the top of my list,” Stephanie Jung said.“But, it was hard when we first started to find the quality in the goat.”

The color is hard to miss when looking at their 2022 kid crop, from full red wethers to black spotted does, Lazy J Bar Ranch is bursting with color.

A colorful goat herd
The full-red color pattern has become quite regular in the Jung's herd, especially in their full-blood registered does. Photot taken January 18, 2022 in Mina, South Dakota
Emily Beal / Agweek

“Most of my herd has some color behind it … I always tell them it’s kind of like breeding horses, you never quite sure what flavor or color you’re going to get,” Stephanie Jung said. “It makes the kidding season a lot more fun.”

The Jungs had quite the kidding season thus far in 2022, with around 120 kids hit the ground. Stephanie said this kidding season has been going extremely well, despite the challenging cold temperatures and vicious winds. The wethers and does that were born will be candidates for their annual sale, is held on the ranch each April. Most of the herd is marketed toward other registered or commercial breeders, but they keep a few does back to remain in their breeding program.

A spotted doe kid
Lazy J Bar Ranch has an annual sale where they offer premium genetics along with their noteworthy color, as seen in this spotted doe kid. Photo taken Jan. 18, 2022 in Mina, South Dakota.
Emily Beal / Agweek

The Jungs also sell their stock for youth to show in various circuits and their children have excelled in the full-blood registered classes and divisions around the state.

“I think any time you can get kids involved in agriculture, it doesn’t matter if it’s playing in the dirt, in a barn full of animals or if you’re in the show world … get your kids involved,” Stephanie Jung said.

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Emily grew up on a small grains and goat farm in southern Ohio. After graduating from The Ohio State University, she moved to Fargo, North Dakota to pursue a career in ag journalism with Agweek. She enjoys reporting on livestock and local agricultural businesses.
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