A primer for city folks moving to the country
Manure stinks. Agricultural producers say it smells like money.
Don’t complain about farmers with your mouth full.
Ranchers and farmers were, and are, the first environmentalists. They care more about the land than anyone.
Farm and ranch animals are well cared for; would you abuse your livelihood?
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Yes, most tractors have air conditioners and heaters. Don’t you have those amenities in your office?
Tractor cabs were designed for safety, to keep farmers out of some of the dust, and to save the farmer’s hearing. Without air conditioning it would be like being in a glass room for 12 to 14 hours per day and the sun beating in; you couldn’t stand it, why should farmers have to?
Farmers and ranchers do not live in cabins with dirt floors, but in modern homes.
Every day is Earth Day for farmers.
Asking a farmer or rancher how many acres they own or how many cattle they own, is like someone asking you how much money you have in the bank.
Nothing beats the aroma of newly mown alfalfa hay.
Baby calves are fragile just like human babies. A rancher will try anything to save a baby animal if it gets sick.
Farmers and ranchers like to answer questions; how else are you going to learn?
The most basic questions are the building blocks to understanding.
Farmers and ranchers have computers and the internet, cell phones, satellite dishes, and they read books — just like you.
As in any occupation, there is a specific vocabulary. If a word isn’t defined, just ask. You’ll soon become conversant in the lingo.
Watch the roads when you drive. There could be a deer coming across the road or a calf may have strayed out of the fence.
No matter how well the fences are kept up, animals can get out if they want to.
You’ll be welcome in the community, if you remember the farmers and ranchers were living there first and don’t expect them to change to accommodate you.
In social situations be flexible. If there is a heifer calving or some other animal challenge, a rancher may cancel his or her rendezvous at the last minute.
Cattle is a collective noun for all matter of bovine: cows, calves, steers, heifers and bulls.
It is acceptable to use cows as a collective noun as in, “The cows are out!”
Hereford is a breed of cattle.
Heifers are female cattle that have not yet had a calf.
A two-year old heifer has had one calf and will soon have another — go figure.
A cow is a female that has had at least two calves.
Bulls are male cattle. Steers are castrated male cattle.
Don’t phone after 9 p.m.
Neighbor is someone you are as well as something you do, as in neighboring means to get acquainted with and to help others. ❖
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