Showing posts from August, 2014

Australian outback icons, windmills and Holden cars

Wind power isn't new, it's been used for generations to pump water for stock from creeks or dams or underground artesian wells. Windmill, Shear Outback, Hay Another pretty windmill, this one from Jugiong a long way upstream from Hay. Windmill, Jugiong On display at the Shear Outback museum in Hay, an old Holden car as used in the iconic shearing movie, Sunday Too Far Away , a harrowing story about the debilitating effects of the shearing life and alcohol abuse on families. Great movie though. Holden car that has seen better days, Shear Outback, Hay

Sheep shearing museum, Hay, New South Wales

I visited Shear Outback, a museum about sheep shearing in Australia. There's a lot of historical and technical stuff, different kinds of shearing combs and techniques, and plenty of cultural and social context as well. I liked the display showing the amount and kind of food typically eaten (up to 6000 kilocalories per day, 25,000 kilojoules), as well as a sports science type analysis of the effects of shearing work on the body. No wonder people's backs packed it in after a couple of decades. Shearing shed Across from the museum is the Murray Downs shearing shed where shearing displays are done every day. Sheep pen floor Shearing area Sheep move from the pens to the shearing area and then back out through the chutes after they are shorn. The wool is cleaned up a bit, classed, and baled, then shipped off to buyers. Chutes Apparently people are now experimenting with chemical injections that cause the fleece to basically shuck itself off the sheep. Sca