Most farms are businesses that raise animals and produce food to be sold to individuals, restaurants, supermarkets, and other businesses. Some of the food grown on farms also feeds the animals on a farm. A visit to a farm might include meeting many different animals that live there including cows, pigs, chickens, horses, sheep, goats, llamas, and donkeys. Horses may also reside on a farm but are usually used to help with the work, though most farmers use machines on modern farms.
Cows are usually raised to produce milk or beef. Dairy farms usually keep many cows and will milk them two or three times each day and then sell the milk. A cow may eat up to 100 pounds of food each day and drink about 50 gallons of water. Cattle that are raised for beef are not milked, but they are taken special care of to help them grow into a certain size and then are sent to a different market facility.
Goats are another animal kept on farms and raised for their milk. They eat hay or grass and spend time in a fenced pasture during the day but are milked twice each day.
Pigs that are raised on farms are usually kept indoors and carefully cared for by the farmer. A female pig is called a sow and a male pig is called a boar. An average pig can grow to weigh between 600 and 900 pounds, but some can weigh as much as 1,000 pounds. Once large enough, a farmer will sell the pig.
The chickens on farms are used for either eggs or meat. Chickens on a farm are kept in a chicken house but do have an outdoor area for wandering. Female chickens are called hens and will produce eggs collected by the farmer and sold to markets. A male chicken is called a rooster and is needed for a farmer who decides to raise chicks.
Sheep may be raised by farmers for their wool. They need hay or grass to eat and lots of fresh, clean water to drink, plus special minerals to help keep them healthy. Sheep-shearing usually takes place every spring on a farm. The shearer uses a special shear to give the sheep a haircut for removal of the wool to sell it.
Another animal raised for their wool is the llama. Llamas are not the standard farm animal, but they live on farms too. They eat hay, grain, and grass and need clean water, a shelter for sleeping, and spend time in a fenced pasture. Just like sheep, farmers shear llamas in the spring of each year selling their wool to markets as well.
Horses live on farms but are not used for producing milk or meat. The horses live in a pasture or in a stable. The farmer takes care of those that live in a stable, feeding them and keeping them clean. Those that live in the pasture are in a natural setting and eat and run around in a large fenced area. Farmers still check on the horses in the pasture to make sure they stay healthy. A horse can help farmers with many chores and can be used for transportation on the farm
An animal that resembles a horse is the donkey. However, they have needs and behaviors. Donkeys on farms often have a friendly personality. Some farmers use them to guard the farm because the donkeys often feel protective of other farm animals. Donkeys eat hay and grass.
In summary, there are many kinds of animals that live on a farm. Most are used by farmers to produce food such as meat, milk, eggs, and wool. Other animals such as horses and donkeys can be used to help the farmer with the chores.
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