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Euneeke (Rob Work)

AUSTRALIA | Sunday, 17 January 2010 | Views [2080]



Well it is the first job that I have had which has nothing to do with lifeguarding.

So that i could be closer to Heidy I looked for a job inland and near Rolleston. I got a job with the Euneeke Cattle Company in Springsure. Spingsure is about two hours drive from Heidy.

My Job was on Vandyke Feedlot as a team member. Vandyke is around 4000 acres. However the feedlot was around 3/4 square kilometers. The feedlot had just under 4000 head of cattle whilst I worked there with a maximum capacity of 4300.

At the begining as I didn't have any experience of cattle work i had to do all of the crap jobs like cleaning up spilt corn and cleaning the yards. But they slowly trained me up to use the Big Boys toys. The heavyist being an 18 tonne frontend loader which is used to load the food mixer and make fire breaks. The biggist was an 8 tonne articulated ex mining truck. This was used to carry the silage from the silage pit to the shed where the food is mixed. I was also trained to drive a little loader called the Bobcat and a medium size loader called the Manito.

4000 head of cattle eat alot of food. Each day they had to be feed 60ton of feed. The feed is made up of corn, wheat, silage and cotton seed. It is all loaded into
the 12 tonne feeder. The feeder then needs to about 6 trips to distribute feed which takes around 4 hours.

As I gained more experience my jobs changed and i was checking the pens for sick cattle, running (moving) cattle and helping to treat cattle.

I was paid $100 a day which also included food and accommodation. I wasn't staying at Vandyke but at Euneeke with my boss Lex and his wife Jo. Euneeke is
around a 45 minute drive from vandyke with 20km on a dirt track. At Euneeke I got my own little place which had a bed with a very small kitchen, ensuite shower room
and large closet. Also at Euneeke lived Lex's son Trent and his wife, Chantelle, and her child from her previous marriage, Armarni. There was also 12 dogs, 3 potties (Baby cattle) and a shetland pony called candy. 

Fun With the Wheel

During the time I worked they gave me a ute to drive to and from work with. On the last week I was driving me and another worker, Zane, to the feedlot when we heard a noise that sounded like we had a flat rear tyre. The truck started skiding
from the back. As I slowed the truck down to pull over the back left side dropped right down and the back went really light. When I stopped the back left wheel
rolled passed the truck and continued a further 100 meters up the road. I looked at Zane and said, 'I dont thinks its a flat mate'

After we got the wheel back and Zane found 5 of the 6 knuts we realised that we only had 2/3's of a jack. We had the jack and the turning handle, We were just missing the hook that conected the two parts. This meant that instead of using the
handle that would have taken less than a minute we had to use this tiny spanner which took about 10 mins to lift an inch. It was so slow. Luckily Jo was driving past us and had a handle and the conecting piece. This ment that the wheel was finally fixed 15 minutes later, but, Because we only had 3/4 of a jack for most of it, in total it took us an hour and a half to fix.

Not the best thing to happen at 6.30 on a monday morning.


About half way through my stay at Euneeke there was a bad lightning storm which started a wild scrub fire on the next property.

The day before, Lex and Trent had put a fire break in place. This is when they drive the dozer about 1km away from fire and all the way around it, scraping all the grass and stuff off so the fire hopefully cant burn past it. Lex and trent had to leave the next day. So my neighbours plus me and one other worker called Jon went up at night to start the back burn. This is when we drive along the break and burning all the grass back onto the fire so that there is nothing for the fire to burn. One team of two light up the grass and another team of two follow to stop the fire from going the wrong way and jumping the fire break. After we set it all, we had to watch it to make sure the fire did not jump the fire break.

We finally decided it was good to leave at around 2 in the morning and got back home at around 3am. Then back up for work at 5am. That was a long day!   

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