Animal husbandry
Animal husbandry is the agricultural
Agriculture is the cultivation of animals, plants, fungi and other life forms for food, fiber, and other products used to sustain life. Agriculture was the key implement in the rise of sedentary human civilization, whereby farming of domesticated species created food surpluses that nurtured the...

 practice of breeding
Animal breeding
Animal breeding is a branch of animal science that addresses the evaluation of the genetic value of domestic livestock...

 and raising livestock
Livestock refers to one or more domesticated animals raised in an agricultural setting to produce commodities such as food, fiber and labor. The term "livestock" as used in this article does not include poultry or farmed fish; however the inclusion of these, especially poultry, within the meaning...

Animal husbandry has been practiced for thousands of years, since the first domestication of animals.

In more modern times, the cowboy
A cowboy is an animal herder who tends cattle on ranches in North America, traditionally on horseback, and often performs a multitude of other ranch-related tasks. The historic American cowboy of the late 19th century arose from the vaquero traditions of northern Mexico and became a figure of...

s of North America, charro
Charro is a term referring to a traditional horseman from Mexico, originating in the central-western regions primarily in the state of Jalisco including: Zacatecas, Durango, Guanajuato, Morelos, Puebla...

s of Mexico, or vaqueros, gauchos, huaso
A huaso is a Chilean countryman and skilled horseman, similar to the Argentinian, Rio Grande do Sul's or Uruguayan gaucho, the American cowboy, the Australian stockman, and Mexican vaquero and charro. A female huaso is called a huasa, although the term china is far more commonly used for his wife...

s of South America, and farmers or stockmen of Australia tend their herds on horses, all-terrain vehicle
All-terrain vehicle
An all-terrain vehicle , also known as a quad, quad bike, three wheeler, or four wheeler, is defined by the American National Standards Institute as a vehicle that travels on low pressure tires, with a seat that is straddled by the operator, along with handlebars for steering control...

s, motorbikes, in four-wheel drive
Four-wheel drive
Four-wheel drive, 4WD, or 4×4 is a four-wheeled vehicle with a drivetrain that allows all four wheels to receive torque from the engine simultaneously...

 (4WD) vehicles and helicopter
A helicopter is a type of rotorcraft in which lift and thrust are supplied by one or more engine-driven rotors. This allows the helicopter to take off and land vertically, to hover, and to fly forwards, backwards, and laterally...

s, depending on the terrain and livestock concerned.

Today, herd managers often oversee thousands of animals and many staff.