April 15 2024 10:31 AM

Farmers get to experience many incredible sights of nature, and last week so did people in many parts of the country.

Our farm experienced totality during the 2017 solar eclipse.

Once-in-a-lifetime events come around, well, once in a lifetime. I think as dairy farmers we are very lucky to see and experience many things that the average person will never have the chance to. But last week, many people got to cross off the bucket list item of seeing the total solar eclipse.

Were you in the path of totality? Or did you travel a little bit to get to experience it? Our farm was only at 23% this go-round, but it brought back good memories of the total eclipse we experienced in 2017. I think it is very exciting that its path this time made it more accessible to so many more people.

We only got 2 minutes of totality seven years ago, but it’s a moment that will live in my memory for a lifetime. The temperature drop and darkness in the middle of the day were the most dramatic stand outs. Did you enjoy any elements of totality?

I know there was a lot of talk of how the eclipse would affect our herds and animals. While I don’t remember the ladies really having any reaction at all, did anyone observe strange behavior in their cows or other animals? We did notice the birds behaving strangely and being quite confused.

There also seemed to be apprehension of how the mass of people traveling to these areas could affect the flow of the farm day. Our farm is not situated near a main road, and the only issues I remember hearing about were added traffic and cell service issues. Hopefully if you were in the path of those visiting your area, they treated it with respect and now everything has returned to normal.

Even if it wasn’t a bucket list item for you personally, I hope everyone took a couple of moments to view the eclipse. We are so lucky with all that farm life allows us to experience. Sometimes those experiences blend with the mainstream for a monumental event that I hope went smoothly for your area.

Darleen Sichley

The author is a third-generation dairy farmer from Oregon where she farms in partnership with her husband and parents. As a mother of young sons who round out the family-run operation as micromanagers, Darleen blogs about the three generations of her family working together at Guernsey Dairy Mama. Abiqua Acres Mann's Guernsey Dairy is currently home to 90 registered Guernseys and transitioned to a robotic milking system in 2017.