Drovers drive sheep and cattle from station or farm to market, or to new agistment as required, for example, during periods of drought.
DROVERS. (Cairns Morning Post – 2 December 1907)
The boss or “Dab and Plaster,” as he is familiarly called by the men; is a man of many parts. He steers the mob from the front and has a passable time. His troubles are few – bar scarcity of grass and water, pleuro, ticks, station managers, cockies, rushes and the men he has little else to worry him. If he has not stirred up the best water, he is asked up to afternoon tea at the station. If he has he is asked to go to that place where blankets are below par and ice at a premium. A successful man works on the principle, that you can’t catch flies with vinegar, sugar is better. Our man worked on these lines. He flattened all the infuriated station managers, cockies and boundary riders with tea and expressions of regret. An irate cockie would race up to the camp, wanting to know why the bullocks were a mile off the route. “What; eh! You don’t say so; Damn those men – You can’t knock sense into them. Get off old man and have a drink of tea. Blast them, I’ll straighten’ em up. You can’t trust em. Get off old man and have some tea.” And it generally ended up by the cockie getting off and having a drink and a yarn, and the bullocks a further half mile spread.
HT to this Australian Slang Dictionary for their definition of: Cockie : farmer (Farmers were called cockies in the early days of European settlement because, like the birds of the same name, they made their homes on the edges of permanent waterholes)
It was hard enough to travel across miles of outback country, you had to have your paperwork up to date too.
The Argus – 25 June 1932 – droving sheep across the Werribee River in Victoria.
This old bloke looked after his horse by providing him with an accessory to flick away those flies and other insects.