Now because this is a highly sought after job around here, the only photo I have of chopper mustering is one I took when we went up to check out the floodwater a little while ago, but the vision from the air of cattle moving away from the chopper is much the same, just without all that water! The helicopter is very effective in pushing a lot of cattle together pretty quickly, making the task for the men on horseback much easier. What this means in real terms, is that they're back at the house sooner looking for 'smoko'. Is there anyone out there who still uses that expression for morning tea? I'm certain the boys would tell you that isn't the reason they ring Jack and get the 'bird in the air', but it's definitely the biggest impact of the job from my point of view (seeing as how I am the producer and provider of cups of tea, scones, cakes, biscuits etc. etc. etc...I'm just so happy to have discovered the recipe for the orphanage sized chocolate cake that thay all love. It even lasts longer than two days!)
If you're fascinated by all this, and would like to discover more about helicopter mustering, I can recommend Fiona Lake's website. She travels the northern parts of Australia, photo-documenting work on the big stations (Ours, at 27,000 acres is quite small by comparasion!). Her website has fantastic photos and plenty of interesting information, including some sound explanations of the various terms used in different countries to describe the properties where cattle are raised, and the people who work on them!