MEET the McBean Family from Ruby Downs Cattle Station, located in the Douglas Daly, NT. Sam McBean has been involved in the cattle industry since his childhood on Bradshaw Station, where—despite living 600km apart—he first met wife Sarah-Jane through School of the Air.
Now, the couple are raising three young children in a way that is unique to the bush; playing outdoors and skipping school for musters.
HOW DID SAM AND SARAH-JANE GET INTO THE LIVESTOCK INDUSTRY?
“Sam and I purchased Ruby Downs in the Douglas Daly in 2006,” Sarah-Jane says.
“Ruby is a good place to fatten trade cattle for market with improved pastures such as Buffel and Jarra grasses.”
Wanting to expand herd numbers, the couple purchased Providence Station (Sturt Plateau) in 2008 as a bare block.
“It was a lot of long days and sleeping under the stars before a house was built,” Sarah-Jane says.
“The property now has numerous watering points and paddocks for our herd of 3000 breeders.”
HOW DO THE KIDS GET INVOLVED?
Sarah-Jane says there is no better place than the bush to bring up a family—all three of her young children love being outside in the garden and looking after their animals.
“Jack is five and already a great help in the yards and opening gates,” she says.
“They also don’t mind having to miss out on a day or two of school once in a while to be involved in the big musters down at Providence.”