A farmer’s perspective
I’ve tried to stay out of this. It takes a lot of time to write a letter and get it to the mailbox.
When the first photograph of the pair of guernsey oxen appeared on the front page of the Herald, it got my serious attention. I had just finished evening chores and milking my guernsey cow. And I had just had to ship to auction a beautiful guernsey cow — 11 years old and named Daffodil that same week. I tried to get her into a local slaughter house but the wait was too long (and yes, by the way, the meat is “yummy”.)
I’d no sooner sat down at dusk to read the article when a coyote began barking and snarling in my orchard, so I had to race out and try to shoot it. I’ve lost 27 out of 31 lambs, plus three mature ewes and one mature ram, since May to coyotes.
I’ve been farming on my own now for 35 years — I was 33 when I bought it in 1978. I’ve grown and raised everything, but for the last 20 years, I’ve concentrated on organically raised pork, lamb, and beef which I sell at the Brattleboro Farmer’s Market.
I also milk cows — purebred guernseys — cows that are direct descendants from my father’s herd — at one time, the largest in New Hampshire — cows that I first began milking when I was 10 years old.
(As regards some of the recent letters,) some people don’t know what they are talking about, and it’s none of their business. Farming is a revolving door — they come in and they go out, it’s simple. Some of my best meat customers are recovering vegetarians, and aren’t there enough invasive vines out there already?
Maybe we should begin to worry about something more important. How about all the troops in Afghanistan? Funny that on Veterans Day, it is Lou on the top of the front page, and the veterans are beneath.
(Oh, by the way, I also spent 4-1/2 years in the Marine Corps.)