*92 of 99 White Suffolk rams sold to $5000, av $1474
*Total clearance of 10 Texel rams sold to $3600, av $2000
*33 of 45 Texel/White Suffolk rams sold to $2000, av $1206
*12 of 15 White Suffolk ewes sold to $800, av $683
A SOLID ram line up backed by raw performance data triggered a new high for Mertex Texel and White Suffolk stud's third annual on-property sale at Antwerp.
Competition on the stud's Texel rams eclipsed previous sale highs, with the entire offering of 10 rams hitting $3600, and averaging $2000, as 15 new clients attended the sale chasing high-performance terminal rams.
The top-priced Texel was the muscle-loaded Lot 101, which weighed 109.5 kilograms on the day of the sale and had a Terminal Carcase Production Index of 130.9.
He recorded Australian Sheep Breeding Values of 6.5 for weaning weight (WWT), 9.3 for post weaning weight (PWWT) and 1.5 for post weaning eye muscle depth (PEMD).
He was purchased by Zammit Pastoral in a draft of four rams, av $2280.
"It was the confidence in the lamb market that meant clients were paying more than they usually would," Mertex stud principal Tim Jorgensen said.
"They were willing to compete for the rams they wanted.
"We had a good offering of rams with good muscling, conformation and thickness - we could offer them the quality they were chasing."
The second highest-priced Texel ram was $3100, paid by Peter Simpson, Wagga Wagga, NSW, for the 102.5kg Lot 102.
Client support on the White Suffolk offering topped at $5000, for an average of $1474.
The top price was for Lot 5, bought by Geoff and Julie Davey, Geejay White Suffolk stud, Kerang.
The June-drop ram weighed 145kg, was sired by Mertex 180533, and had figures of 16.3 PWWT, -0.8 millimetres post weaning fat depth (PFAT), 0.7mm PEMD and 135.5 terminal carcase production (TCP) index.
A volume buyer with the purchase of nine rams was Nutrien Ag Naracoorte via AuctionsPlus.
The top of their purchases was $3600 for Lot 6, a May-drop ram weighing 145kg.
The ram had figures of 12.4 PWWT, -0.7 Fat, 0.2 PEMD and TCP of 124.7
The Texel/White Suffolk offering peaked at $2000 twice.
Lot 131 purchased by a Westech Ag Kyle Livestock, Kaniva, account secured a total of nine rams to average $1378.
Lot 112 went to a long-term client in W & P Caldow, Edenhope, who also purchased Lot 111 for $1900.
They also put together a line of eight White Suffolk rams in the sale to a top of $2200, av $1700.
In the White Suffolk offering, 12 of 15 ewes offered sold to $800, and averaged $683.
The top price was paid by Ian and Julie Plumridge, Ridgell Downs White Suffolk stud, Langkoop, who purchased a further two ewes for $750 and $700, bidding through AuctionsPlus.
Other volume buyers were the Wait Family, Edenhope, who secured 16 White Suffolk rams to $1500, av $1331.
First-time clients, the Robertson family, Dunkeld, purchased 12 Mertex rams to a top of $1300, av $1075.
The sale was conducted by AWN Livestock & Property Wimmera, DMD Horsham, DMD Nhill and AuctionsPlus.
"Buyers are attracted to the volume of meat they can inject in their prime lamb breeding," Mr Jorgensen said.
"We have a few clients that have done trials with our rams and they've been rapt with the growth, yield and carcase quality of the lambs when sent over the hooks.
"This is why they keep coming back."