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Photos by Bobbi Fleming Eva.

In Florida they’re called “cracker cowboys,” maybe because none would be caught dead without his trusty bullwhip, or as they say in Florida, “cow whip.” They run cattle into “cow pens,” and “ride out in pairs” accompanied by their faithful “Florida curs.” Many Florida ranches calve in both spring and fall.

During droughts, creeks dry up and feed needs to be hauled in. Grandfather oaks draped with Spanish moss provide welcome shade in the heat and humidity for cowboys and cattle alike. Every ranch house in Florida, it seems, has a huge, well-worn porch equipped with a herd of rocking chairs, a hammock and a porch swing or two

Pat Willis rides his colt into the creek crossing on one of the Durando ranches. Foreman Jim Shelfer, Tim Taylor and Jane Durando follow close behind.


Ken Eva feeds a pen of weanlings and checks them over at the Darnsby horse barn on the Duck Smith Ranch near Wauchula, south central Florida.


Driving cattle through the gate on the Durando ranch stirs up dust during a Florida winter drought.

Spring 2002 Contents | Git Home!

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last page update: 04.03.05