A milestone year for Babirra Poll Merino and Dohne stud was met with good demand at the stud's 60th annual on-property sale at Stansbury on Tuesday, with the average of the Dohne offering up by nearly $300 on last year's result.
Of 52 Dohnes offered, 47 sold, reaching a top of $4200 and averaging $1757, while 17 of 30 Poll Merinos also sold, topping at $1800 and averaging $988.
Making the sale's top price was Lot 4, a 114-kilogram sire with a Dohne index of 152.9, a fat depth of 6 millimetres, eye muscle depth of 40mm and had a fleece measuring 19.2 micron, 3.5 standard deviation, 18.3 coefficient of variation and 99.5 per cent comfort factor.
Secured by repeat clients RJ&LA Tilbrook, Curramulka, the sire had impressive growth for weight figures, with Australian Sheep Breeding Values of 5.7 for weaning weight and 6.5 for post-weaning weight - both in the top 10pc of the breed.
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Babirra stud co-principal Lynda Farrow said the ram had a good structure.
"You always think your number one ram is the best, but it depends on what people like and you just never know," she said.
"(Lot 4) was quite a big and square ram, with good wool, he was just a good Dohne ram," she said.
Ms Farrow was pleased with the sale result, which surpassed her expectations.
"A few months ago people were selling their sheep, but the season picked up just in the nick of time, and on the whole it went a bit better than expected, especially with the Dohnes," she said.
Making top price in the Poll Merino offering was lot 57, knocked down to GD&JA Cook, Minlaton. Weighing 109kg, it had an eye muscle depth of 40mm a fat depth of 7.5mm, with fleece measurements of 19.2M, 3.5SD, 18.4CV, 99.6CF.
The Cooks, who are also long-term clients, bought one other Poll Merino, lot 63, at $1000.
The body weight and wool quality was outstanding.- TOM PENNA
The sale's main volume buyer was MS&SM Jackson, Rowena Station, via Broken Hill, NSW, who bought 15 Dohnes to a top of $2000, averaging $1413.
Babirra has been selling to the Jacksons for about a decade, with the pastoralists usually buying in bulk, depending on the season.
DS, PD&SS Agnew, Minlaton, bought five Dohnes to $2400, averaging $1940.
Twenty-one of 22 registered buyers secured sires.
Elders conducted the sale, with Tom Penna carrying out the auctioneering duties and complimenting the stud on its offering, particularly in the Dohne line-up.
"It was the best ever line-up of Dohnes here, the body weight and wool quality was outstanding, they were excellent testing wools and thumping big body weights," he said.
"For paddock-run sheep at this time of year, they looked very very good.
"The Merinos also had good wool on big frames, Babirra is just in an area where Merino demand isn't as strong."
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