On the tropical Island of Mindanao in the Southern Philippines most small rice field farmers, who cannot afford the expensive modern farming machinery, own at least one Carabao (kalabaw), they consider their carabao as a faithful partner in life and s one of their most treasured possessions. This Beast of Burden is put to continuous work from the age of four years up to 15 years and sometimes beyond. It hauls harrows, carts and plows with loads of several tons, dragging itself through the mud up to its belly. The carabao is a multitask animal, almost maintenance free and environment friendly. The Asian water buffalo is generally considered by most Filipinos to be their national animal, with their tedious and slow pace they are used for preparing the soil in rice fields that are flooded with deep water and as means of transportation. The soil of the rice paddy is initially saturated with the water from the irrigation canals, the carabao will then trample the planting area until it is soggy enough to plant the rice seedlings.
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