Market test pays off well for Mangoplah producers

Mangoplah family breed 97kg lambs with Charollais, White Suffolk genetics


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Adam and Tim Boyd, Mangoplah with their second cross lambs by Charollais cross White Suffolk rams. The lambs weighed up to 97kg and sold for $334.20/head.

Adam and Tim Boyd, Mangoplah with their second cross lambs by Charollais cross White Suffolk rams. The lambs weighed up to 97kg and sold for $334.20/head.

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Charollais growth rates impress.

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A decision to hold back around 140 lambs from their usual supermarket turn off has paid off for Mangoplah producers, the Boyd family.

Tim Boyd, who runs a commercial sheep business alongside his wife Karen, said it was his son, Adam, a local agent with GJ Hulm, who encouraged taking the mob of lambs as far as they could to make the most of the record-breaking prices in the prime lamb market.

The effort paid off for the Boyds when they sold 70 lambs by Charollais/White Suffolk rams and from first cross ewes for $334.20 a head at the Wagga Wagga saleyards last week.

The stand-out pen of September-drop lambs weighed up to 97 kilograms, live weight.

The Boyds moved from Tarago to Mangoplah 15 years ago and began buying Charollais and White Suffolk rams from Culcairn based stud, Rene, six years ago.

The lambs that sold for $334.20/head in the yards at Mangoplah. Photo supplied.

The lambs that sold for $334.20/head in the yards at Mangoplah. Photo supplied.

Tim said they started in Mangoplah with 800 breeding ewes and they now run roughly 2000.

They sell 80 per cent of their lambs to Coles, close to 6000 going direct to supermarket giant this year.

But Adam said close to 140 of their September-drop were picked out to go through a new feeding regime.

"We saw they had outstanding growth for their age when we marked them so we thought we'd try a new way to grow them out," Adam said.

"We fed them a ration as we do with Coles lambs but instead of selling them at our target weight, we moved them onto lucerne, then grazing wheat."

"This was a cheaper feed source and they still continued their weight gain in the paddock."

The program also gave the producers an indication on how Charollais/White Suffolk performed in the heavy lamb market. A Charollais cross is not as common in the prime lamb market as Poll Dorsets and White Suffolks but Mr Boyd said they started to use Charollais in their sire cross because of its high carcase yield potential.

"We find the Charollais were a good ram for a maiden ewe and they tend to yield five per cent better than the average cross," Mr Boyd said.

Mr Boyd said increases in yield percentage were especially valuable at the moment, with meat and grain prices high.

"If something's going to yield better and still eat the same amount of feed it's more money at the end of the day," he said.

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