Woodpark Poll Merino

Poll Merinos sell to $15,500 and lift av to $4245 at Woodpark

The $15,500 top ram with Elders wool representative Clyde Mckenzie, Deniliquin, and Carol and Stephen Huggins, Woodpark Poll Merinos, Hay.

The Woodpark Poll Merino ram sale went off with a bang, following the trend of other high profile Poll Merino ram sales earlier in the month, averaging north of $4000 and selling to three states.

It was the high quality white wools that buyers were chasing, with every client not only talking about the wool quality, but the fact these rams could go to Gippsland’s high rainfall areas, through to 11 inch rainfall country around Longreach in Queensland.

The versatility of the rams to suit a variety of climates, while maintaining a stylish white wool that was attractive to every buyer, drove the sale.

The Huggins family increased their average $645 on last year’s record average of $3600 to set a new benchmark for the stud at $4245, across the 147 of 150 rams sold at the main auction, before putting the selected grade rams up at a mini auction to average an impressive $3032.

The top ram was a 19 micron ram with tremendous body shape and carcase, with an outstanding stylish white wool, backed with ASBV figures in the top five per cent for yearling weight at 11, and top five per cent for MP and DP indexes at 172 and 165 respectively.

Clyde McKenzie, Elders wool representative, Deniliquin, secured the top ram for $15,500 for Mathoura Station, who run 6000 ewes and look to breed 20 to 30 rams themselves a year for their needs.

“He was a well balanced ram, with a well nourished, distinctive wool.”

“They are shearing every six months now, so we need sheep with good free growing wool lengths at six months,” he said.

New buyers at the sale, JAB Shorter and Sons, Narrabri, made the trip south and secured the second top ram at $11,000 and another at top sire at $7500 to kick start the sale early on, before heading back north.

It was volume buyers, led by first time buyers at the sale Lisa Sheen ( manager), Merrowie Station, Hillston, who secured 12 rams at auction, averaging $4375 and a further four in the grade rams at $2875.

Ms Sheen joins 7500 ewes and also buys rams at Ballatherie Poll Merinos and the company she manages for is moving to a non muesled operation and looking for plainer bodied sheep.

“We want rams that are not over 20.5 micron and must have growth figures above seven for their ASBVs and a good barrel and length of body, with free growing, soft handling wool,” she said.

Peter Unger, MV Agriculture, Alectown, played from the first ram until the last ram and secured 14 rams at $3161 to join with his 2500 Merino ewes.

Mr Unger said he was chasing the heavier cutting, free growing sheep, with plenty of carcase still underneath them.

“I am pretty happy with where my micron is at, at 18 micron, but I am just chasing a bit more carcase in my sheep,” he said.

Paula Dean, “Notus Downs”, Longreach, Queensland, has bought at Woodpark Poll for six years and again made the two day trip south to secure 10 rams at auction to $7500, averaging $6100, along with a further seven grade rams at $3800, before looking to top up with grade rams later on.

Ms Dean said she loves the uniformity and temperament of the Woodpark rams, as it gives her the option to buy right throughout the sale with confidence.

“They are really uncomplicated sheep that suit our low rainfall country extremely well,” she said.

Ms Dean runs 4000 ewes at 19 micron and sells the wether portion straight off mum to private buyers.

“I have a set criteria that I am very firm on following, where I select my rams off the figures first and then I travel down to put my hands on them and make sure they fit the bill,” she said.

Wes Stott, Bungeeltap Pty Ltd, Kyneton, Victoria, purchased eight rams, averaging $5469, chasing plain bodied, uncomplicated rams, as he was moving to a non muelsed operarion.

“I wanted softness and brightness and targeted the more southern rams in the draft to breed wethers to grow out for two years and get three wool cuts off,” he said.

Long time supportive agent of 20 plus years, Jarrod DeMarco, Nutrien, Mansfield, bought 20 rams to go to the Seaspray area for two clients that have been long time supporters of the sale..

The sale was conducted by Elders and Nutrien, with Nick Gray (Elders), Harry Cousens (Elders) and Peter Godbolt ( Nutrien) as auctioneers. It was interfaced by AuctionsPlus.

– Brett Tindal – The Land

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