Name: Sean Hammond
Location: Gold Coast, QLD
Job title: Livestock Ultrasound Tech (fancy way of saying I Preg check cows)/ Repro-Scan Ultrasound Representative/ Silencer Hydraulic Cattle Crush Representative (www.catagra.com)
How did you get into agriculture? Was raised on a sheep and beef farm in North Island of New Zealand. After a string of jobs in construction and bar work in Australia for 10 years a year ago my mother asked if I would like to get involved in my fathers rapidly growing ultrasound business.
Education: High school, Alstate A.i., NZ
If you studied/trained in agriculture, why did you choose that degree/certificate? Most of my training as come down to giving it ago. Why? because it’s the best way to learn
What are/were your plans after school/tafe/university? Like every other Kiwi to be the next All Black!
Describe your job on the average day When I go pregnancy checking it usually starts with a bit of a drive out to a station meeting everyone in the yards. Then i set up my ultra sound equipment around the cattle crush then I’ll preg check anything from 350 cows to 1200+ plus cows with lots of good laughs and good conversation.
Also I sell Repro-Scan ultrasound equipment and also Silencer hydraulic cattle crushes, so I spend a bit of time on the phone and going to trade shows.
What is your favourite part of your job? There is a lot so I’ll name a couple.
When people see what I do and they can see the calf on the ultrasound screen and by the end of the day the telling me if the cow is in calf or not from what the see on the screen! The look on their faces and in their eyes is the best.
I get to meet a lot of people with what I do so I really enjoy that.
I see a lot of the country with all the driving I do.
I really enjoy showing and selling people products that improve the industry.
Knowing there is a lot of opportunities in Ag, like last month I was Kansas, USA looking at the Silencer Hydraulic Crush.
What are your interests? Rugby (Even more so now the All Blacks have the world cup), Ag Shows, Rodeos, Camp Drafts, Going to the beach, Hunting.
What’s your favourite thing about the industry? The “Get it done attitude” that farmers and people in the industry have, there is no problem to big! Trust me there is not a lot of people with that attitude here in the city.
Best experience in agriculture? Getting through my first big day of ultrasound preg testing and knowing I did a good job, and hitting 10000 head of cattle In only my second month of work.
Worst experience in agriculture? When the pregnancy % is low on a station (only happen to me once), hitting a kangaroo in a rental car and hitchhiking for 3 days in rural Queensland. (Also one of the best tho!)
What do you think will be the biggest challenges of the agricultural industry in the future? Other then certain political groups stopping major industry over night!? Trying to feed a growing population with less land is a good challenge. Also the challenge is how to keep young people in the industry. The average age of farmers is getting higher every year.
Why do you think less people are becoming involved in agriculture? The isolation I think is the biggest part as well as some wages can be lower to the mining industry.
What advice do you have for people thinking about getting into agriculture? Give it ago! If your having trouble getting a job start calling stations ask if they have job and if not ask if they know someone who has a job and if that doesn’t work ring them next week.
This also applies if you see or hear of someone in a career that you would like to do, talk to them! Ask them how they got to where they are, ask them as much as you can I bet you’ll get answers or will know where to start looking after talking to them.
And if you get the chance to work don’t just ask HOW to do something but ask WHY they do it, this will show that your interested and you will learn quicker and you’ll enjoy your job knowing what the purpose is.
How important do you think an agricultural background is to become involved in the industry? I have very little background in in the industry, a year a go I didn’t even think of this industry! So you don’t you need any as long as your keen!
What do you think is the most common misconception about agriculture? I think after the live export problem there is a bit of misconception in the city that people in the beef industry like to hurt there cattle, which I really enjoy telling them other wise because it is 100% the opposite way!
A lot of people In the city think there food comes from Woolworths and Coles! This always makes me laugh out loud and burns deep down inside me and is usually followed by a firm one sided conversation had by me.