For people looking for gift ideas to suit the farmers in the family, outlined are some options to suit both a big and small budget.

Big budget ideas

1. Cattle clippers

A good, heavy-duty set of cattle clippers are a great asset at housing time. Clipping cattle along the tail, back and head keeps animals cleaner, less prone to lice and reduces the risk of pneumonia.

Clipping cattle prior to selling live can improve the visual appearance and attract greater buying interest.

2. New calving jack

If the calving jack on farm has clocked up quite a few seasons and showing a bit of wear, then investing in a new jack at Christmas is timely with spring calving just weeks away.

3. Calving or lambing cameras

Calving cameras are expensive, but with a big range of products on the market, it may be possible to find something to suit your budget.

Cameras in the calving shed takes the hassle out of late-night checks. They are also a great tool to check on cows when farmers have to leave the yard for whatever reason.

4. Dehorning iron

A handheld gas de-horning iron is a great tool for disbudding young calves. They are lightweight, easy to operate and much more mobile than the larger irons that connect to a gas cylinder.

5. Online herd management package

There are online packages that record herd data, from calf birth registrations, feed purchases, weighing data and medicine use. Most are yearly subscription-based.

As they come in app form, the data can be accessed via smartphones, which makes these management tools very handy to pull up an animal's history.

Smaller budget ideas

The best gifts are those that fill a need or make life easier for others and don’t necessary have to cost much. Outlined are a few less smaller budget items.

1. Waterproof clothing

Good-quality waterproof clothing make working outdoors in poor weather more bearable, especially with lightweight clothing.

2. Thermal footwear

Work boots or wellingtons with a thermal insole, or even good-quality thermal socks, will be a welcome comfort on a cold winter’s morning.

3. Work tools

A new silage fork or hand scraper may be a welcome gift to help with cattle feeding and keeping the shed or handling unit clean.

Is there a farmer out there who doesn’t crack up when someone has moved the silage fork and you have to go looking for it?

If there are multiple cattle sheds on farm, having a fork in each shed is a small, yet valuable thing.

Handheld power tools are another option to help carry out servicing machinery or farm repairs.

4. Handheld weigh scale

How many farmers fill buckets with meal and know exactly how many kilos are being fed to cattle?

Rolled barley will be lighter than a blended ration and a blend will differ in weight to a pelleted nut. Also, is every bucket filled to the same level?

A handheld weighing scale is a low-cost piece of kit. Buckets can be filled and the weight checked to improve the accuracy of meal feeding.

5. The trusty pen knife

A good-quality pen knife is a must for every farmer. Opening silage bales, meal and fertiliser bags and cutting bits of bale twine for a short-term fix all need a good knife.

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