There are a few different types of farms in which the job duties vary. Mostly all farm work is done outdoors, and tasks include tending to livestock, harvesting crops, raising plants in greenhouses and inspecting farm products. Working on any type of farm requires the love of working outdoors, physical fitness, lots of stamina and a willingness to get down and dirty.
Farm Workers/Agricultural Workers
Farm workers normally are responsible for farm animals such as cattle, horses, goats, sheep and swine. Farm workers usually feed, load, graze, herd, castrate, brand, weigh, de-beak and catch the animals on the farm. These farm animals normally are products of meat, eggs, milk, fur, skins, honey and feathers. Depending on the type of farm, some farm workers may have to operate milking machines and maintain the animals housing areas. Other duties of farm workers may include administering medications to animals, examining animals for diseases and injuries, administering vaccinations and/or insecticides.
Laborers are responsible for harvesting vegetables, fruits, grain, nuts, fiber, trees, shrubs and numerous other crops. They normally plant, seed, prune, harvest, irrigate, pack and load these crops. Greenhouse workers and nursery worker, which are also laborers, normally prepare lands and greenhouse beds for growing products such as plants, flowers, trees, and sod. Their tasks normally consist of watering, planting, weeding, pruning and spraying plants.
Animal breeders are responsible for selecting and breeding animals based on their knowledge of animal science and genetics. Animal breeders use their knowledge of animal science and genetics to produce animal offspring with specific characteristics and trait that may benefit the farm such as cows that produce more milk or pigs that produce meat that is less lean. Animal breeders must keep track of the traits of the animal offspring that are produced.
Graders and Sorters
Graders and sorters normally examine products that are being prepared to be shipped off. Their jobs are to classify the goods according to condition, color and size, and throw away damaged or defective goods.
Agricultural inspectors are normally employed by the federal and state governments. Their jobs are to make sure that the laws and regulations are enforced. They also govern to quality, health and safety of the products that the farm produces. Another important task an agricultural inspector must perform is ensuring that the equipment used in producing the goods are safe and meet quality standards.