IN A move tailored to spring lambing producers, the Funke family, Bundara Downs, Bordertown, held their inaugural summer ram lamb sale on Friday, offering 111 eight to nine-month-old White Suffolk and Poll Dorset ram lambs.
The sale peaked at $2000 and averaged $866, with 56 rams selling in a 50 per cent clearance.
The $2000 top price was paid by Daryl Finch, Geranium, on behalf of his son Ben Finch, Broken Hill, NSW, for his White Suffolk stud. The ram, BD9790 Twin, weighed 84 kilograms at nine months of age, was beautifully balanced and had great breed type. These attributes were supported by outstanding Lambplan figures including 17.55 for post-weaning weight, 2.17 for eye muscle depth and a ranking of 212.59 on the Carcase Plus Index.
While this ram produced the outstanding individual sale result, the evenness of the drafts was a standout, with all rams displaying good growth, excellent skins, wool and muscling conformation, with all well above breed and industry average performance levels on Lambplan.
This was appreciated by the 11 registered buyers present, plus those on the AuctionsPlus network, bidding through Elders Bordertown manager Brenton Henriks.
Scott Altschwager, Elders Millicent, bidding for Corporate Laguna Bay Pastoral Co, Skipton, Vic, was the volume buyer with 10 Poll Dorsets to $900, averaging $830.
AuctionsPlus provided buyers for seven White Suffolk rams to $1100, averaging $871, while three buyers in attendance secured seven White Suffolks each. Jim Alexander, Kaniva, Vic, paid the sale’s second-highest price of $1200, averaging $857, for sires to go over Merino ewes.
Philip Crane and Peter Thorpe, Mundulla, also took seven White Suffolks each, averaging $843 and $814, respectively.
“We don’t need to use ours until later in the year but to be able to pick up this number of quality rams at this price is an opportunity too good to miss,” Mr Thorpe said.
Rob Carberry and newly-appointed agent Tim Meulendyks, Arcadian Wool, Hamilton, Vic, were strong on the early lots and bought four White Suffolks to the equal third-highest price of $1100 for GA&MS Craig, Apsley, Vic.
Matt Heinrich, Serviceton, Vic, also bought four White Suffolks to $900, while Daryl Exton, Bordertown, took four Poll Dorsets and one White Suffolk to $900.
Stud principal Steve Funke was pleased with the result.
“There are more and more ewe lambs being mated in the sheep industry today, plus ram requirements are not necessarily fully known by producers in September when we hold our main sale, especially so for spring lambing producers,” Mr Funke explained.
“We knew we were stepping out of the box and into uncharted waters, so to get a 50pc clearance was pleasing.
“We are very happy with the result and have committed to this sale for five years, but I’d have to say the real winners today are those producers who came along and supported this sale and got the quality they did at such good value.”
The sale was conducted by Elders Bordertown with Tony Wetherall and Tom Penna taking bids.