Anna Creek Station
Anna Creek Station is the world's largest working cattle station. It is located in the Australian state of South Australia. Its area is roughly 6,000,000 acres (24,000 km2; 9,400 sq mi) which is slightly larger than Israel. It is 1,977,000 acres (8,000 km2; 3,089 sq mi) larger than its nearest rival, Alexandria Station in the country's Northern Territory and over seven times the size of the United States' biggest ranch, King Ranch in Texas, which is 825,000 acres (3,340 km2; 1,289 sq mi). The station is currently owned by Williams Cattle Company The nearest township is William Creek (which is surrounded by the Anna Creek station), but the nearest town for freight is Coober Pedy.
Anna Creek in the 2000s
Despite its size, in 2007 Anna Creek Station was carrying only 1,500 head of cattle due to the drought which started in 2001. In 2008, the station was owned by S. Kidman and Co Ltd, there were eight full-time staff and they were destocking all their cattle. Following floods in 2010, conditions improved and the station has restocked. It had 10,000 head of cattle in May 2011. and is capable of carrying up to 16,500 head of cattle during a good season.
They raise Santa Gertrudis cattle as they are suitable for hot, dry climates.
In April 2016, it was announced that South Australian cattle company, Williams Cattle Company, had acquired Anna Creek from S Kidman & Co.
Life at Anna Creek
There is a main homestead at Anna Creek and an outstation at The Peake. Although the homesteads are very isolated, they have satellite telecommunications including television and internet. The Coober Pedy Oodnadatta One Day Mail Run delivers mail twice a week and can bring a small amount of freight. The Peake Ruins, including those of a former telegraph office, cemetery, mine site and lime kilns at the outstation, are listed on the South Australian Heritage Register. The Strangways Springs Telegraph Station Ruins on the station are also listed on the Heritage Register.
Once there was a large workforce of stockmen at Anna Creek, who mustered the cattle on horses. Today light aircraft are used for spotting animals which are rounded up by stockmen on trail bikes, requiring a much smaller workforce.
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- "Mail Run Tour".
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