Living and learning in Dixon Springs

Living and learning in Dixon Springs

Jun 22
Lucas Neira, Animal Sciences graduate student

Interning at Dixon Springs Agricultural Center (DSAC) has given me the unique opportunity to work on a research ranch that mirrors the real environment of a production ranch. DSAC functions like a real ranch: we have the same size, conditions, facilities and difficulties as any production ranch.

I had never been on the inside of a research farm before coming to DSAC. My point of view about how a research ranch works before was completely different than it is now. I had never thought about how hard it must be to keep track of different treatment groups, conditions, and instructions. Each project requires the technical team to give doubled attention just to keep up! Researchers know they can rely on our team to address everything with a scientific approach.

DSAC also supplies researchers with amazing facilities. The abundant pasture, where cattle can graze during the grass season, offers comfortable shade from trees. When the cattle need feed, DSAC has an on-site stock of feed so we can mix the feed rations according to the specific research plans. DSAC has 5 corrals equipped with scales so we can easily track and measure the progress of any research treatments.

One of the things DSAC offers that caught my eye when I first arrived were the four-wheelers. We use these “little horses” to handle the cattle to check on the necessary daily stuff. I was so surprised at how easy, fast, and efficient the work could be with the four-wheelers!

The opportunity to stay here and to work in these facilities and with the research crew has improved my skills and the way I look at research ranches. I’ve been enjoying this opportunity, and I can thank living and learning here for making my progress possible.

black cows