Kahalawai Farm and Creamery is breeding ADGA registered Nigerian Dwarf dairy goats in Hawaii.
We keep a small herd of miniature Nigerian Dwarf dairy goats on a tiny two and a half acre farm nestled into the windward slopes of the West Maui Mountains. (Note-We are not in Lahaina. Lahaina is on the dry leeward side.) We are are interested in supporting food security on Maui and are breeding for goats that produce household amounts of milk over a long period of time. Our goats are friendly, healthy, dairy goats in colorful, miniature packages.
Because they are SO STINKING CUTE! Seriously, if you haven’t met a little goat yet, put it on your bucket list. Goats are joyful creatures, full of love and mischief. And unlike their larger cousins, Nigerians are small goats, easy to house, handle and feed. Nigerian Dwarf goats are functional dairy animals, recognized by the American Dairy Goat Association, and much sought after for the sweet, creamy milk that the breed is known for. The non-goaty milk is high in butter fat and protein, making it an excellent choice for both chocolate milk and cheese-making. Nigerian Dwarf goats produce one to two quarts of milk a day which is a very manageable amount for household use. It is easy to scale up to meet demand by freshening more does.
The Nigerian Dwarf dairy goat is still a young breed, graduating from the The Livestock Conservancy's Conservation Priority List in 2013. This is a testament to the breed's popularity, but also means that the breed is still evolving. Decide what is important to you and then choose your genetics accordingly. Goats that have not been selected for dairying are more likely to be poor producers and hard to milk. These goats will cost just as much to house and care for but may disappoint. There are no guarantees in breeding but choosing genetics that have been selected for milking will stack the deck in your favor.
Veterinary care is provided by Dr. Christie Balcomb of YourVet Farm Sevices. Our goats are raised on pasture with loose minerals, kelp and other supplements available as needed. Goats may also receive alfalfa, timothy hay, black oil sunflower seeds, beet pulp and/or grain depending on conditions. Pasture rotation and fecal testing are used to help manage worm loads and goats are vaccinated annually. Kahalawai goats have been purchased from herds that have tested negative for Johne's, CL, and CAE. Our entire herd tested negative for all three diseases in October 2016. Blood testing is no longer considered reliable for Johne's and CL. The herd tested negative for CAE in the summer of 2018 and again in spring 2019. Outside breedings are not offered due to biosecurity concerns although we may offer breeding services to does purchased from our farm with a negative CAE testing within 30 days.
You've heard of micro dairies? Well, we are a nano dairy! Raw milk sales are illegal in Hawaii. We are not licensed so the goat milk, soap, butter, yoghurt and cheese we produce are used for our own personal consumption. We do share sea salt caramels and ice cream from time to time, but only with very nice people.
I dreamed of little goats for a long time before the first Nigerians arrived on our farm. Buying a goat on the internet is easy. Getting the little goat to Maui? Not so much. I was about to give up when I finally connected with Anne Peterson who kindly agreed to help. Anne is a busy lady running her own farm which includes the legendary Rosasharn herd. On a sunny day in late November 2012 two tiny little goats flew from Boston to Maui. We gave thanks that year for Anne.
I would also like to thank Sarah Hawkins, owner of the amazing production and performance herd Castle Rock. Sarah took time out from her perpetually busy life to answer all of my questions, even the silly ones. And when you are as new to things as I was, most of them are silly! She sent Sage and Mahea to me in May of 2013, just in time for my birthday. Sarah made getting those kids here almost as easy as picking them up from the farm and then followed up with a personal visit a few months later. I always knew Sarah was a rock star. She proved it to the world in 2015 by winning the Nigerian Dwarf National Championship with her gorgeous girl, Flash Flood.
Two more little does arrived at the farm in 2014 via Linda Carlson of Gryphon Tor (now Mythos Farm). Linda is a kind and generous soul and I am ever grateful to her for being willing to share some highly sought after genetics.
No outside goats joined our herd in 2015.
By 2016 I had a good idea of the direction I would like to take my herd in. After MUCH research I placed a reservation on a gorgeous doe with a silly name who lives at Dragonfly Farm. Reservations are just wishes and sometimes they don't come true. Egghead birthed a single doeling that spring, and was retained by her owner. Lucky for me Joanne has many, many fine animals in her herd, as she has demonstrated repeatedly at the ADGA National Show. In September of 2016, Joanne shipped us a gorgeous new buckling and doeling, who just happened to be polled (naturally hornless). Big Mahalos to Joanne for her good work in getting those kids over here in tip top shape.
Fast forward to 2017. I somehow hoodwinked Sarah at Castle Rock and Joanne at Dragonfly into sending me a few more gorgeous does, and jumped at the chance when Jodi at Stayawhile offered to slip a special little doeling into a shipment going to my friend Val.
We are very grateful to these breeders for their generosity, their passion, and their commitment to the breed through the ADGA performance programs. I have learned so much from all of you. Thank-you for entrusting us with your goats, our program stands on your shoulders.