Richards Land & Cattle (Oregon House, California) is hiring for a Sheep & Cattle Ranching Apprentice. Richards Ranch is located in Oregon House, CA along the Yuba River and about 1.5 hours from Sacramento. The ranch is 6500 acres of rangeland used to graze 500+ cows, 30+ hogs, and small sheep herd. Their sister company Richards Grassfed Beef is where they send finished animals for processing and then distribution to butcher shops, restaurants and families throughout the greater Sacramento and San Francisco Bay Area.
Applications are being accepted on a rolling basis, with the intent to do interviews in early October. This position is ideal for someone with some previous hands-on experience on farms and/or ranches, and has the potential to turn into a full time management position.
Monthly stipend begins at $1100 and may raise depending on experience and as an apprentice becomes autonomous. Housing is provided - a partially furnished, 1 bed / 1 bath house on the ranch. Spouses or partners may be accommodated based on the needs of the ranch and discussions during the interview.
The apprenticeship at Richards Land and Cattle will run November 1-June 30. Starting in November, the ranch will start receiving the 300 mother cows from Northern California. The pace in November-December is quick and exciting. Once the animals arrive the apprentice will work alongside the mentors at first, and will start moving cattle towards the back of the ranch, feeding them and checking them daily. In early January/February the ranch will receive 100+ finishers (1000 lbs heifers and steers) that will finish on the front of the property on a separate grazing plan than the mother cows. In April, the entire mother cow herd will be rounded up for vaccinations, fly tags, preg test and sorting for when the grass season hits full force in April. The mother cows will ship to their summer grazing pasture in the first week of May. The remaining finishers will stay on property through June and will harvest as they are finished. Cattle moves slow down to 2-5 day moves in June and July when the weather gets hot. At the same time the apprentice will be monitoring the sheep herd who will be lambing in the spring. The ranch is applying for a targeted grazing contract through the NRCS which may bring in 100+ ewes from April-July – TBD. Hogs will be fed daily and moved to pasture weekly in the winter and monthly in the summer. The hog grazing is used to disturb the soil in heavily wooded areas. Late summer and early fall when the weather cools down it’s time to take on projects like firewood, winterizing, fixing roads, pipelines and moving hay for the winter. Although our apprenticeship ends in June, the mentors are looking for someone for a year round position, the option to stay through the summer could be available if our apprentice chooses to and both apprentice and mentors feel it is a good fit.
The apprentice will be required to:
Have a positive attitude
Survive in a dusty hot environment, fall/winter temperatures in the (20 to 50 degrees) and spring/summer in the (60 to 100 degrees) range.
Drive a pickup truck or ATV, standard transmission
Adjust & adapt on the fly
Live in a rural area
Work with a team, or individually
Ideally the apprentice will have at least 2 seasons of experience in some of the following:
Working with beef cattle, pigs, sheep or other livestock
Driving a tractor
Basic knowledge of home repair/carpentry skills