A DECISION to turn their attention to building a bigger Merino flock looks set to pay off for the Cordingley family of Lorelmo Poll Merinos after clearing all of their 49 sale rams for a $2352 average on Monday.
Speaking before the sale, co-principal Eddy Cordingley told the crowd of the family’s plans to reduce their cattle herd and better manage drought conditions by developing their dual purpose Merinos.
“We spent a lot of time and money feeding cattle last year, which we want to avoid,” he told The Land.
“Through a well planned sheep setup we reckon we can do better.
“Percentage wise we will be running more sheep and running the stud off of our commercial enterprise.”
Despite the difficult seasonal conditions around their local area and further a far, the 2019 sale was a major improvement on the previous year’s auction of $3000 top and a $1646 average.
From the moment the first ram went under the hammer on Monday, prices never looked like wavering.
The top price of $4250 was achieved for a Syndicate Three son that sold to the Brazel family, Broadacres, Niangala.
The ram had a body weight of 88.5 kilograms, the heaviest of the catalogue, and a fibre diametre of 17.1 microns. He had a standard deviation of 2.4, a co-efficient of variation of 14.09 and a comfort factor of 99.92.
The Brazels run an ultra fine Merino flock and cattle on their property with their ewes averaging 16 microns and a 4.1 kilogram wool cut.
Due to poor seasonal conditions and problems securing water, Mr Brazel expects to run about 600 Merinos, down from the usual carrying capacity of 1000 ewes and their progeny.
When selecting a ram to purchase, Graeme Brazel said he was looking for a sire that could offer a different direction in their wool.
“We are looking for open, free stapled type wool,” he said.
“Soft, possibly a little bit more frame. Mostly, our wool, you would call it semi-soft rolling and trying to keep that distinct krimp, possibly grow a little bit more.”
A repeat buyer who hadn’t purchased from the sale in a few years, Mr Brazel was initially looking for a few rams but said he broke the bank on his top price purchase.
“He was about my third or fourth pick believe it or not,” he said.
The second top price of $4000 was achieved twice.
The first ram of the sale weighing 87 kilograms with a fibre diametre of 17.7 micron hit the high mark when he was knocked down to the Beynon family, Uralla.
Westmihi Merinos, Lillygrove, Guyra, paid $4000 for one of their two ram purchases, an 84.5 kilogram son of Syndicate One with a 17 micron fibre diametre.
The sale was supported by a number of repeat buyers, including South Australians, the Andre family of Millicent, who secured six rams for an average of $2958 and top of $3500 twice.
Bulk buyers on the day were the Bulmer family, Bolivia Station, Tenterfield, with nine rams for an average of $1944 and top of $3000.
Garoka Pastoral Company, Blackfellows Gully, Walcha, secured six rams for an average of $1250.
The sale was conducted by Elders Walcha with Paul Dooley as auctioneer.