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Off farm jobs.

jedstivers

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I know a lot on here do other work and I find it interesting to know about other things and how they are done.
In my area there is no other work than Ag, no factories, food processing, nothing.
If some of y'all would share what you do and some about how it's done I think it would be a interesting thread.
I only farm and run cattle, I don't have anything to add really unless some wants to know about growing and watering AR Delta crops.
I've never had a job either so I have never done anything else. Don't really want a job, that doesn't look to good to me.
On cattle I have a small mama cow herd of 30. I buy stockers starting in October (national dead calf month) and buy till Christmas.
 

slick4591

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I would say running cattle and farming on the scale you do is probably more of a job than most of us has held. I'm retired so I do what I want when I want.
 

farmerjan

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Well, some already know that I am a DHIA supervisor/tech...glorified milk tester. I have about 22-25 herds "on the books" usually, and most are on 1 x milk testing meaning I go to only one milking. Most alternate morning one month, evening the next. Some mornings I leave by 1 am to go to a barn that starts milking at 215 a m . The other day I left at 615 for a farm that starts at 7 a m but they never start on time. Most milk at about 12 hour intervals so the afternoons are usually about the same milking time, except have a few that start at say 5 a m and 4 p m ...a 11-13 hour difference. Milk prices being really bad for about a year or more, many would skip a month and go 2 months between tests. This is not required by law but a management tool for the farmer. Often required by say farm credit if there is a fair amount of debt, so they can see how the dairy is doing....also required for independent records for registered cows especially when merchandizing any.
No two days are the same, and there are always 6 farms that want to test the same week and then no-one for the next week. I can work that to my advantage somewhat during hay season...I do more mornings and will test weekends if we are in the hayfield and it is calling for rain and we need to get done now...All the farms I test know that we farm also, and are pretty good about it. But I am also pretty acommodating with their schedules and equipment failures, hoof trimmers, etc. Been doing it 25 years. Had 4 farms sell out last year with several more that the owners are in their 50's to 75+ look for a few more to go out in the next few years. I'm 63 and will be done at 66 to "just our farming" if all goes along...

My son, Michael (43) is a supervisor at our VDOT headquarters. He puts in a 40 + hour week. Our hours do somewhat compliment each other. They work 8-4:30 and 7-3:30 in the summer. He is on the night crew when there is snow/bad weather in the winter. So, he cuts hay in the afternoons when I am often in the barn testing. I will do the tedding/raking during the day when he is at work, and get it ready for him to bale when he gets off and I have to sometimes go to work. I have helped stack hay on the wagon until my ankle and knee joints got so bad, but I do still sometimes ride the wagon and help some until he gets other help to show up. We get some part-time help from guys/kids that work elsewhere or go to school but it is hard to find any real good help anymore.
When not making hay, he does alot of the feeding...taking round bales to the different fields, pastures and feeds some corn silage in the barn to the weaned calves and some of the "old cows" that we pamper a little more when they have calves.
I can also do hay feeding with the truck/bale bed and with the big JD with the bale spear.

We rent alot of land and do as much rotational grazing as we can.

We both do bush-hogging at pastures, and I often will haul cattle to the sale in town if he is working.
I can tag calves at birth, but again the joint issues have made it difficult the last 2 years. I do check them during calving and keep up with who has what.
We both work in the barn to run stuff in the chute to work them or preg check or whatever.
I keep all the records.

We run 150-200 brood cows and calve a group in the spring and a group in the fall. I also have 3-6 nurse cows at any one time and raise baby calves on them. I also do any grafting of a calf on a cow that has a dead calf or anything like that. He doesn't have the patience and will tell anyone that.

He bought a place 2 years ago and wants to get it paid for, but the prices the past 2 years aren't helping. He plans to retire at 55 with 30 years at VDOT if all goes well.
 

True Grit Farms

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I've been a grunt my whole life and did whatever it took to get ahead. Some how it all worked out and I'm just messing with cattle and living the dream. But I stay so busy doing nothing now that I can't keep up anymore.
 

JSCATTLE

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Up until 3 years ago I was a contractor.. I had a framing and remodeling crew and a concrete crew that worked for me full time .. I made pretty good money but the illegals doing work for half price finally got me .. now I'm an operator in a chemical plant and I have no desire to be in charge again .. I've been approached to train as a step up boss for future jobs but I've declined..I run about 50 head now down from 150 before the last drought.. I gave my leased land back and only run cows on my place..
 

RanchMan90

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I'm an instrument and electrical technician in a paper mill. Started out working on the road in natural gas compressor stations til that market tanked. It's about the only industry in my area, but I'm glad to be home every night.
 

uplandnut

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I've been working on an asphalt paving crew since I graduated high school, got on a paver and been running that for the last 12 years. Just got into the cattle game in the last three years and am enjoying it even with the low margins, have my first rented pasture this summer.
 

callmefence

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Fencemans place...central Texas
Of course I build fence. Along with custom gates and entries. Gate openers. Barns sheds, cattle guards , decks, boatdocks etc. I have just short of 60 mama cows. I guess I could say I Do some land management. Mostly just managing the balance between cows and deer hunters. I've been completely self employed for approx 23 years . I do have a schedule to keep. And occasionally do large commercial jobs on sub contract for larger outfits. But most days I can kinda choose what I do to a certain extent.
 

Craig Miller

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Most of yall know I work on an oil rig. I have been doing this for ten years. I've drilled for oil and gas both in arkansas, east and west oklahoma, east, west and south texas. As far as cows go, well I'll just say I wear a REALLY big hat.
 

Putangitangi

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I write, for a magazine and a website. I live my dream! I also have a relatively well-paid by-the-hour job on a committee which meets infrequently in person and the rest of the time by email and teleconference, considering complaint information from members of the public against a professional body in a health-related field. It's fascinating and I get to do that from my farm-view office too.
It wasn't always so: the first fifteen years of farming while taking low-paid work wherever and whenever I could get it to pay the fert bills, buy the bull semen, build somewhere to live, until all that started to pay its own way. Now it's sweet.
 

rla442

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I'm small scale farmer compared to most on here and only run between 12 - 20 head of beef depending upon the calf crop and what I retain over the winter. Outside of that I'm an Air Force Ammo troop. For 25 + years I've been putting on the Air Force uniform every day and "providing the enemy the opportunity to die for their country" working AMMO. My daily routine when getting to my office on base is to check Cattle Today forum. I look, learn and read more than comment.
 

True Grit Farms

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rla442":36r2yn6c said:
I'm small scale farmer compared to most on here and only run between 12 - 20 head of beef depending upon the calf crop and what I retain over the winter. Outside of that I'm an Air Force Ammo troop. For 25 + years I've been putting on the Air Force uniform every day and "providing the enemy the opportunity to die for their country" working AMMO. My daily routine when getting to my office on base is to check Cattle Today forum. I look, learn and read more than comment.

You have one of the most important job's IMO. That is keeping my family safe, thanks for your service.
 

J&D Cattle

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I work for a community bank as a lender. Each day is something new. I do enjoy my job but sure get tired of riding this desk at times. As Dad says though, I'm warm in the winter and cool in the summer. It does have its perks.
 

M-5

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AT the FLORIDA STATE line checking papers
Well I guess I shall enlighten the masses of the great works I do on a daily basis. I Single handedly facilitate one of the basic necessities of MAN . In my carrier I have been able to provide FOOD and Shelter to many thousands of people. And in return They pay me for my supreme guidance and expertise.
 

True Grit Farms

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M-5":2y3bxqtr said:
Well I guess I shall enlighten the masses of the great works I do on a daily basis. I Single handedly facilitate one of the basic necessities of MAN . In my carrier I have been able to provide FOOD and Shelter to many thousands of people. And in return They pay me for my supreme guidance and expertise.

That's very important down in the foothills.
 

midTN_Brangusman

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Aeronautical Engineer for the department of defense on a air force base. My job mainly consist of running sub and super sonic wind tunnel test on fighter jets, missiles, etc.. Get to see some pretty cool stuff. As far as cattle I have 58 registered Brangus cows and 1 registered brangus bull. Run about two loads of bred angus heifers a year and about 80 commercial beef cows. Sometimes there isn't enough time in the day to get everything done, especially during breeding season with AI and embryo work but honestly wouldn't trade it for anything.
 

shaz

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I'm the test engineer in an automotive parts manufacturing plant. I do a lot of electronics and programming mostly Labview but other languages as well. Spend a good bit of time fixing stuff.

50 mama cows on land I own.
 

SIMMGAL

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Home is where the HERD is, VA
I'm an X-ray tech at a local hospital, so I take x-rays for my "official" job. Also help my mom with her Antique business when I have free time.

I personally have 70 cattle. Half are purebreds and the other half are crossbred. My parents have about 80-100 crossbred cattle and I help out with those too. We also grow broiler chickens and at max capacity we have over 300,000.
 

TexasBred

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farmerjan":30yw5s0v said:
Well, some already know that I am a DHIA supervisor/tech...glorified milk tester. I have about 22-25 herds "on the books" usually, and most are on 1 x milk testing meaning I go to only one milking. Most alternate morning one month, evening the next. Some mornings I leave by 1 am to go to a barn that starts milking at 215 a m . The other day I left at 615 for a farm that starts at 7 a m but they never start on time. Most milk at about 12 hour intervals so the afternoons are usually about the same milking time, except have a few that start at say 5 a m and 4 p m ...a 11-13 hour difference. Milk prices being really bad for about a year or more, many would skip a month and go 2 months between tests. This is not required by law but a management tool for the farmer. Often required by say farm credit if there is a fair amount of debt, so they can see how the dairy is doing....also required for independent records for registered cows especially when merchandizing any.

For whatever it's worth I always worried about our milk tester. The long hours, climbing all over a barn trying to get cow numbers and just trying to get it right. Not an easy job.
 

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