Three breed options on offer at LSK

Suffolk, Poll Dorset, Charollais genetics on offer from LSK stud

Sheep
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LSK stud's goal is to maximise the value of their rams for clients.

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LIFTING PRODUCTION: Lachie and Sophie Kelly from LSK stud, which supplies terminal sires in three different breeds.

LIFTING PRODUCTION: Lachie and Sophie Kelly from LSK stud, which supplies terminal sires in three different breeds.

LSK stud's goal is to maximise the value of their rams for clients, and they're doing that by providing high quality genetics in three different breeds.

The operation began with the LSK Suffolk stud, which was established by the Kelly brothers at a young age.

The Suffolk flock went to a new level with the introduction of exclusively top Allendale rams since 2011, and in late 2019 stud principal Lachie Kelly purchased the entire Claronden Poll Dorset stud from Aaron and Dee Pascoe.

Mr Kelly has also continued breeding Charollais-cross rams, which Mr Pascoe began in 2014, and he's focused on improving genetics in all three flocks.

"We endeavour to produce balanced prime lamb sires that combine elite performance data, with excellent breed type, conformation and structure," Mr Kelly said.

"We believe that the mix of breeds in our offering complement each other and cover a wide range of production systems.

"While each breed has strengths, all of our rams are produced for the purpose of maximising the profit of our clients."

LSK clients are operating a range of production systems and ewe flocks, with clients mainly in western Victoria.

"We love getting feedback and working with our clients - listening to their results provides great motivation and their observations form a crucial part of our genetic selection decisions," Mr Kelly said.

"We're breeding rams to put our clients at the front of the industry - we can only achieve that with excellent communication and collaboration."

TERMINAL SIRES: The LSK stud began with Suffolks.

TERMINAL SIRES: The LSK stud began with Suffolks.

Mr Kelly said stud ewe numbers had increased this year to boost the ram offering and provide increased selection pressure.

"I see a valuable opportunity for the expanding number of composite flocks to use terminal rams over a portion of their flock.

"Good, performance-recorded Poll Dorset rams with good downs skins are doing an excellent job of maximising hybrid vigour and producing a top quality, even line of progeny.

"The opportunity is the same for any self-replacing flock, to compound the benefits of not retaining ewe lambs from the inferior ewes in the flock and increase the return from their progeny."

There's plenty of interest in the Charollais-cross sheep. which provide a terminal sire option with improved lambing ease.

While each breed has strengths, all of our rams are produced for the purpose of maximising the profit of our clients. - Lachie Kelly, LSK stud

"The feedback that we're receiving is that the first-cross (50pc Charollais) is the optimum mix, which is what we will continue to offer," Mr Kelly said.

"We see these rams as the next level for lambing ease for ewe lambs or Merino matings, where their early maturity pattern, growth, yield and bare points will shake up traditional lambing ease options."

The family is also currently hosting the Australian Suffolk Association's resource flock.

"The project involves joining commercial ewes by AI (artificial insemination) to diverse and industry relevant stud sires," Mr Kelly said.

"This will provide numerous benefits for the breed by providing actual data records, particularly on hard to measure carcase and eating quality traits.

"In turn, it's assisting to calibrate the DNA genomic analysis for the Suffolk breed."

Mr Kelly is also doing major work on farm to increase production.

"We're passionately developing our property. As well as fencing and pastures, we've got a major focus on planting trees and enhancing wetland areas."

LSK held its first on-property flock ram sale in October 2020, with support from new and repeat buyers resulting in an average of $1587 across the three breeds.

On offer at the 2021 sale are about 100 Poll Dorset, 50 Suffolk and 30 Charollais-cross rams, with new genetics from sires Allendale 146, Derrynock 33, Allendale 136 and LSK 68.

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