Asa Baer is Grey Barn’s livestock manager.

While many other job sites on the Island are shutting down, Mr. Baer and his four co-workers continue to care for about 90 cows, 60 pigs, 40 lambs, a flock of chickens, calves and a couple of cats.

With social distancing taking precedent, Mr. Baer is scheduling his crew so their shifts don’t overlap. It’s a big change at Grey Barn where the staff is used to working together.

“But cows always have to be milked, so it’s not really all that different,” Mr. Baer said.

“All my employees are doing three 14-hour days in a row and one half day before being off for three days,” he added. “I’ve got a great crew, everybody’s been good.”

A typical day begins when the rooster crows, with feeding the calves and milking the cows starting at 5:30 a.m. The parlor gets cleaned and milking wraps up around 8:30 a.m. Mr. Baer starts his day feeding three different groups of cows, each group receiving a different kind of food. Once milking is complete, he helps feed the pigs, bottle milk and wash eggs before afternoon milking begins at 3 p.m.

“Everybody seems pretty good, it’s defiantly a little chaotic just because of the way it’s scheduled, but everybody has been in good spirits,” Mr. Baer said.

At the farm stand, business is booming. New protocol only allows one person in the farm stand at a time to retrieve groceries.

Mr. Baer said he just got back with a load of 30 pigs that usually hold him over to the next load which typically comes in August. If sales continue at this pace, though, another run to meet the June and July demand could be necessary, he said.

Aaron Wilson