Welcome Luna: Heifer joins Ag Department

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Photo by Emma Coleman

The agriculture department’s new heifer, Luna, stands under a tree in her pen on the day of her arrival. She kept her distance from the crowd of students and faculty that flocked to greet her. “My hope is the calf provides more interest in the Ag program at HHS,” said Tom Waters, the farmer who delivered the heifer. “To have something tangible to work with daily versus looking at video or a textbook should provide a rewarding connection with those in the program.”

Will Amos and Paul Rapuzzi

On Monday Nov. 14, a miniature Hereford cow arrived at school among a throng of student and faculty onlookers. The cow is a heifer, meaning that she hasn’t given birth to a calf yet.

During first period on the day of her arrival, students and teachers headed out behind the school to the animal pen in anticipation. After several minutes of waiting, the crowd erupted with a cheer as the heifer was lead from the trailer to its pen.

For some students the arrival of the cow was a surprise. But, why get a new heifer?

“First and foremost it’s about education,” Agriculture teacher Christopher Davis said. “We are going to be doing some animal husbandry, genetic splicing, breeding, animal health and nutrition, and other things along that line that are important to the Ag industry.” He said that having a strong base with animals is important in the Ag field.

“I’m very excited about the young heifer I delivered to HHS,” Tom Waters, the farmer who delivered the heifer said. “My hope is the calf provides more interest in the Ag program at HHS.  To have something tangible to work with daily versus looking at video or a textbook should provide a rewarding connection with those in the program.”

For students both in and out of the Ag program, there are positive and negative consequences.

“I know it’s going to take a lot of money because caring for and raising animals is expensive; it’s going to be great for the Ag program, but it is going to be pretty expensive,” Agriculture student Alisa Maycock (‘17) said.

“I think it is going to be great for the Ag program and help students learn more about animals,” said August Bubier (‘19), one of the students to witness the heifer’s arrival.

For Davis and Jira, it’s not just about education. It’s about getting more people interested in Ag.

“The goal is to get the Ag program moving,” Principal Joe Jira said. “You can’t have Ag without animals.”

“I know for the longest time the Ag department … has been kind of down in the dungeon of the school, so it’s nice to see a lot of people interested in what’s happening,” Davis said. “Hopefully, they can see there is a lot of potential and opportunities within the Ag field.”

“I’m thrilled,” Jira said. “It was a great idea.”

The Student Council held a naming contest for the heifer on Wednesday Nov. 28.

“What about Betsy?” Andrew Turnbaugh (‘20) said. “That name speaks to me.”

“I’ve heard people suggesting names like Lulu and Buttercup,” Carley Blevins (‘18) said.

The final four names were Annabelle, Cinnamon, Little Red, and Luna. It was announced later that day that the heifer’s name was Luna, because she arrived the day of the super moon.