Monday, March 24, 2008

Top Sheep Shearers on Health Kick

The image of one of Australias toughest jobs is changing.

He occasionally wears a blue singlet and does one of the hardest jobs in the country, but the 32-year-old father of four has little else in common with the roistering, booze-swilling, bare-knuckle brawlers of outback legend such as Jack Foley, the shearer played by Jack Thompson in Sunday Too Far Away.

Mr Ferguson, who has spent the past two weeks shearing at Habnarey station, near Lightning Ridge in northern NSW, belongs to a new breed of Australian shearers who are well-paid, professional in their attitude and more interested in keeping fit than tying one on every Friday and Saturday night.

"The old generations have given the young generation a bad name in a way, because a lot of people think shearers are nothin' but alcoholics," the third-generation shearer from Surat in southern Queensland tells The Australian.

Watching these guys at the country shows, I am full of admiration. Tough hot work.


Bretwalda Edwin-Higham said...

Definitely thirsty work, that.

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