*70 of 80 rams sold to $3600, av $1553
A BOOMING market has meant there has been a heavy focus on Merino ram sales this year, but the results from this year’s Koonik Dohne stud ram sale last week demonstrated the dual purpose qualities of Dohnes are still popular with sheep breeders.
Principal of the Goroke, west Wimmera, based stud Fiona Cameron said in spite of dry conditions leading into the sale, there was still a strong clearance rate, with 70 of the 80 rams offered selling.
The top price was $3600, with two lots selling for that price to local repeat buyer Sunnyside Partnership.
Manager of the partnership Richard Hobbs said he was very pleased with the rams, which will head to his property at Clear Lake in the southern Wimmera.
Ms Cameron said there were 26 registered buyers and 16 repeated buyers at the sale.
“It was great to see ten new clients at the sale,” she said.
The average was $1553, which Ms Cameron said was a fantastic effort given the tough seasonal conditions.
Volume buyers at the sale included Tom and Louise McCann, trading under Geelong Lime Pty Ltd, who bought eight rams to take back to the Western District at an average of $1675, while Sunnyside bought six at an average of $3066, and Ian McIlvride, Barmack Pastoral, Callawadda, north of Stawell, bought five, averaging $880.
Mr McCann said he was a repeat buyer at the sale and that the sheep did well in his environment at Fyansford, near Geelong.
He said the season was still reasonable in the area, although it had dried off through September.
The smaller Mitre Rock Poll Merino Stud saw five rams sold to a top of $1300, purchased by Brad Blackwood, Nhill, with an average of $900.
Ms Cameron said she was happy with how the rams presented on the day.
She said she was looking to breed sheep that had true dual purpose qualities with high quality meat and white, soft, well-nourished Merino wool.
The stud was established with the purchase of top stud rams and selected ewe genetics from Uardry and Macquarie Dohne Stud in 2008 and also features genetics from Potari where the Camersons bought stud ewes at the 2010 dispersal sale.
The Dohne is a dual purpose breed developed by the South African Department of Agriculture in 1939 using Australian Peppin Merino ewes and German Mutton Merino sires.
The progeny were interbred and selected for high fertility, rapid lamb growth and medium wool under pastoral conditions.