Saturday 22 August 2015

Sexy Tractors

I little while back I went looking for a sugar cane sunrise, which I found and blogged about.
While I was out, I had seen a harvester on the move, and having nothing useful (okay, housework doesn't count) to do I decided to head out again, after I ate breakfast of cause, and see whether I could find someone harvesting some sugar bush.

By the way, sugar bush is a nickname for sugar cane. Mind you nickname might not be the right word for it, it has the same number of letters after all. But then again, my nicknames all seem to be longer than my real name. But hang on, that's right, I have a short name.

Anyway, back to cane harvesting. I enjoy watching it, seeing the machines going backwards and forwards and the amount of sugar cane decreasing, watching the pattern and rhythm of it all. Maybe that has something to do with having a rural background or maybe it is just because of those big machines.
Do you know that song "She thinks my tractor's sexy"? Maybe I just like a bit of tractor in my life.

So, most of the time when they are cutting cane there is one harvester and two haulout drivers. The haulout drivers are the ones in the tractors with bins (trailers) on the back. When one bin is full tractors usually swap places, but in this case the full one tipped the load into the other one, before taking it to the cane train carriages parked on the railway line, past the next paddock.

What happens when watching them harvest is reasonably predictable and if there are wheel tracks that seem well used, that is where you steer clear of, because more than likely that is where the haulout driver will be tearing through. This particular harvest I was watching was a bit different to what I have seen in the past, a lot slower. That was probably a bit to do with how they were hauling and a fair bit to do with the fact that they had a team there that seemed to be collecting samples on every run (every time the harvester cut a row of cane). Seeing markers on the ground was something different too but I think that was to do with labeling where the samples came from in the paddock.

I wasn't the only one enjoying the harvest with the local bird life coming out to see what was on offer for lunch.

I left when they seemed to stop harvesting and those collecting samples headed off. 
Tractors sitting still doing nothing are nowhere near as sexy as ones flexing their muscles at work.
Just saying ... Well, that is unless they are an old one with lots of character to photograph.

  Do you like watching machinery at work?


  1. Interesting! I've read about how labor-intensive it used to be to harvest sugar cane. This machinery is a huge improvement.

  2. Looks like fun! I've never seen sugar cane harvested. Thanks for sharing!

  3. I love work - I could watch it all day, machinery or not!

    Do they still burn the cane before they cut it, or does that not happen any more?

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne


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