First-cross ewe punt paid off

First-cross ewe punt paid off

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Three months later Ken and Jennifer Hewitt doubled their money on first-cross ewes

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Jennifer, Montana and Ken Hewitt with their $401 first-cross ewes. Photo: Kristen Frost

Jennifer, Montana and Ken Hewitt with their $401 first-cross ewes. Photo: Kristen Frost

Setting a reasonable reserve and being prepared to take their sheep home if that reserve was not met has paid of for Ken and Jennifer Hewitt, Aralwood, Grabben Gullen.

At the first-cross ewe sale held at SELX Yass at the begining of January the couple had offered 283 September/October 2018 drop ewes, October-shorn and unjoined.

The top two pens with 60 in each offered, sold for $252 per head and after the sale a further pen of 60 were sold for $250, but Mr Hewitt said they weren't going to accept anything less for the other pens.

"We thought the sale was back about $40 to $50 on the November sale and were pretty disappointed," he said.

"It was not enough compared to what other sheep were selling for, so we thought we would take a punt and bring them home and feed them."

Mrs Hewitt said she and her husband didn't want to give the sheep away and although they didn't have any feed at home, they felt it best to carry them through.

"We were only offered $180 and $220 for them at Yass and we didn't think that was enough," she said.

And their punt paid off: offered on AuctionsPlus this week the 103 first-cross ewes sired by Galmara BL rams out of Rogara Poll Merino-blood ewes and scanned in lamb to Hillden Poll Dorset rams, sold for $401.

Top money: The pen of 103 September/October 2018-drop October-shorn first-cross ewes and SIL sold for $401. Photo: Kristen Frost

Top money: The pen of 103 September/October 2018-drop October-shorn first-cross ewes and SIL sold for $401. Photo: Kristen Frost

"It is not often we get a good story like this," Mrs Hewitt said.

Mr Hewitt said it was a sale that doesn't happen all the time but when it does is very rewarding.

It is not often you sell the second and third cut and get top money - Ken Hewitt, Aralwood, Grabben Gullen

"It is not often you sell the second and third cut and get top money," he said.

"They had grown out pretty well, had put on a lot of weight even though we had been feeding them.

"We are extremely pleased with the sale, you don't always get a punt that pays but it did this time."

Mr Hewitt said that at the time he withdrew his ewes from sale in January he was quietly confident the market for first-cross ewes was going to lift when the season broke.

The 103 ewes were described by AuctionsPlus Level One assessor Matthew Joseph and had been shorn on 14 October 2019 and recently crutched. Scanned in lamb at 100 percent with 12 percent twins and 88 percent singles, the ewes weighed 59.2kg.

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