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The Manure Spreader: Watch dog

Tim Moffett Published on 24 February 2014

There has been a lot of talk about the “Dairy Farm Security Act.” I for one think it is about time we focus on security – because I’m missing a lot of tools.Your first question might be, “Tim, do you own a dog?” Yes, I own a dog, but right now he is not a suspect.

Quite frankly, even if the dog took the tools, how could he use them if he has no thumbs?



Maybe my dog George could use them. He has a way of putting both of his paws together tightly to open the barn door. But I’m not quite sure he could use an air-powered impact wrench.

Most security is worried about what’s going to come onto the farm. I myself am worried about what leaves the farm. Now, my neighbor Arlie says when he’s missing a few things, the first place he checks is the house. Last Christmas he was missing an 18-volt DeWalt belt sander, but in his wife’s defense, the turkey did turn out very tender.

A certain agency visited me one day and brought up the concern of how just anybody could come on the farm. “Well, how can I keep you guys away?” I asked. They told me some farmers are using “high-tech scarecrows.” It has a camera in its eye so I can watch my cows.

It has a speaker in its ears so I can listen to my cows. To ward off intruders, it sends out a loud shrill sound – you don’t want to know where that comes from. Basically, you can watch the cows, listen to the cows and tell the cows what to do, but you can’t do anything to help the cows. Tell me again who makes this scarecrow?

I read an article recently about how some farms are using remote-controlled tiny drone airplanes to monitor their farms and livestock. I know I couldn’t fly one of these things, but all of a sudden my sister’s kid that plays video games all day is my security chief. Scary!


Now what happens when this controller gets in the wrong hands: a farmer’s wife? How many times have we missed the in-laws or shopping trips because we had “things to do at the farm”? I know I’m not the only one who has ever done that.

Another problem with the drone is how long before farmers start duct-taping shotguns to these things during deer season? Give it some time, corn farmers will modify this security mechanism to shoot a deer, swoop down to retrieve the deer and haul it back to the barn without ever leaving church service.

Here are my five tips to beef up farm security:

1. Please remember who you let borrow what. Remind them daily. Sometimes friends keep things so long, they think the item was theirs to begin with.

2. Putting a donkey in your pasture is not an alarm system. It makes you look like a … well, you figure it out.

3. Don’t worry about identity theft. In this political and economic environment, as a farmer, I recommend you let them take over the payments.


4. In case of any biohazard outbreak, it is very important that you deny, deny, deny.

5. All other security issues can be handled with good aim and a Winchester. I prefer the 30/06 myself. PD

For more farm security tips, visit the Tim Moffett website.