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Odd Jobs: Livestock Auction Yard Boss

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Posted at 6:11 PM, Apr 24, 2024

In the video above, James Rolin continues his "Odd Jobs" series - this time talking with Scott Sivumaki, a "yard boss" at Western Livestock Auction in Vaughn.

Not growing up in a farming community myself, I thought it was an antiquated myth, but in Montana, cowboys are real!

The livestock industry In 2021 alone created three quarters of a billion dollars in household income in Montana. To say that ranching and cowboy life is an important thing for our state would be a massive understatement. In this edition of Odd Jobs, I met with Scott a yard boss at Western Livestock Auction.

The process may seem simple, but it's really more of an art form. It takes years to develop the finite skills to know how the animals will react and where they need to go. Livestock come off the trucks from the ranchers that raise them get sorted by size, color, health condition and many other factors. After that, it's on to the auction block. 

Scott Sivumaki, the yard boss at Western Livestock Auction in Vaughn, MT explained it to me, “ We have our bigger cows and we have smaller, fleshy cows, so I'll just size them a little bit for weight and then that's the way they'll be sold.”

After the auction the cattle are sent over to new sorting pens designating each buyer present. Once the day is done each buyer picks up their batch of livestock and wait for the next event the following week.

“Just basically big circle And from here they go on a truck to their destination and start over next week,” Scott concluded.

The Western Livestock Auction is located at 406 Vaughn S. Frontage Rd, Great Falls, MT 59404 and can be found online at