Grain harvest was the major focus. Despite a significantly dry growing season where only one month exceeded the long-term average, yields were acceptable, and quality was the highest in living memory.
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This month has been exciting, with an Embryo Transfer Program and a big step forward with wool quality on our paddock mating sires.
It is five years since our last ET Program and we enjoyed the expertise of Brecon Breeders for this and a modest AI event. This was our most prolific Embryo harvest to date, and we used 2 outside sires and one of our own proven young sires, Glen Holme 161908. His progeny born in April this year are exceptionally good types.
Our group of single mated sires includes a cohort of 2017-drop hoggets with significantly improved fleeces than had previously been available. This means we are excitedly awaiting our observation, measurement and tracking processes for the coming 2019 lamb drop; these will become available at our 2020 sale.
2020 a sight to see!
We have finalised our Field Day schedule for 2019. We plan to be at
Lucindale for South East Field Days, March 2019
Karoonda Farm Fair, April 2019
Pooncarie (NSW) Field Day, May 2019
Australian Sheep and Wool Show, Bendigo, July 2019
Sheepvention, Hamilton (Vic), August 2019
Yorke Peninsula Field Days, Paskeville, September 2019
We also plan to have Dohne fleeces on display at the Royal Adelaide Show in September 2019.
Selection of our high performing Donor ewes for an Embryo Transfer Program next month is complete. Much thought and research has gone into this process, and the ewes have been inspected multiple times since weaning. We will run a modest AI program at the same time.
Delivery of rams purchased at our On-Property Auction is largely complete.
After weaning lambs, we crutch both the ewes and lambs. This allows us to collect Dag and Urine Stain scores for submission to Sheep Genetics. We now have provided enough data for our stud to have Research Breeding Values (RBV’s) switched on. These can be publicly accessed in a search of our flock, stud number 510184.
If you wish to have some coaching as to how to navigate the Sheep Genetics Dohne Merino Site, we are willing to help you. Please contact Allen, Lauren or Damien.
“You can have your cake and eat it too” has been our strong message to the sheep industry this year.
With extremely high prices for both wool and sheep meat, who would not want the ‘best of both worlds’?
In his welcoming remarks to clients and visitors to our On-Property Auction, Stud Principal Allen Kelly even ventured that you can also have your “steak” as well, because the high fertility of the Dohne gives plenty of lambs for sale and, importantly, plenty of ewe hoggets to make choices from. It is this luxury of choice when classing young ewes that allows for flock improvement.
Of the 160 2017 drop ewes that we offered on Sale day, 68% of them were from multiple births, including triplets and two quads. Of the rams offered, 48% were multiples.
Sale results- 70 rams sold at Auction to $2800 and averaged $1465.
Our family extends our thanks to all our buyers and underbidders. We wish you all the best for the upcoming season. The date for our next On-Property Auction is 19th September 2019.
Rains have come for us! Pastures and crops have benefitted. Sheep look well.
We have weaned the Autumn lambs which allowed us to see the performance of Sires and Dams as we weighted their lambs. We crutched and dag scored these weaners as well; one more step along the pathway of providing the best information for fly strike prevention through genetics.
We are looking forward to seeing some Flock Breeding Values (FBV’s) for Breech scores soon.
Sale rams were lotted and 90 specially selected for our 2018 Sale. Some of the rams that we took to the Australian Sheep and Wool in Bendigo will be offered as the first 3 lots.
The Australian Sheep and Wool Show at Bendigo was a new event for us. This was the first time we had taken sheep there. We had a team of five rams on display. We received two second place and a third place ribbons.
We have taken some visual scores on our young ewes prior to shearing .
We participated in Sheep Week by travelling to Penola in the South East of South Australia. Five other Dohne Studs joined us. It was an opportunity for us all to showcase the dual purpose attributes of our breed.
We shore the young rams that will be for sale in September at our On-Property Auction. We still physically mother-up all our lambs to determine their full pedigree. This is the first and important step in determining accurate breeding values for our sheep. Breeding values are a result of many measurements collected over the early life of each animal in addition to knowing it’s parents. ASBV’s (Australian Sheep Breeding Values) are used as a tool to predict the likely breeding outcomes for an animal.
April and March 2018
Field Day Season!
Lucindale and Karoonda host significant events that we attend. We enjoy meeting our existing clients and explaining the benefits of Dohnes to new acquaintances.
Our belief about involvement in Sire Evaluation Trials led us to participate in the Balmoral Sire Evaluation Merino Lifetime Productivity trial near Harrow in Victoria.
This is a long-term project that is heavily supported by AWI and industry partners, with a $13 million budget for a 10 year program.
The ewe progeny of a Sire will be kept until they are over 5 years old, with their own progeny measured for production.
Our entry is Glen Holme 141077, and we saw the ewe hoggets on February 16th at the Field Day.
Unsurprisingly, these 40 daughters measured as trait leaders (top 10%) for: Weaning weight WWT, Post Weaning weight PWT, Yearling Eye Muscle Depth YEMD, Yearling fat YFAT.
They were visually scored in the top 10% for: Breech Wrinkle BWR, Legs (Structural soundness) LEGS.
Other scored traits were also close to the top.
This pen of 40 ewes was particularly even in type, size and condition, which was pleasing, given that 45% on them were twins.
Unsurprisingly, they were not trait leaders in wool yield and wool quality fields, nor were they the worst. Glen Holme 141077 is after all a Dohne, not a Merino, and the Dohne breed aims to have a balance of production traits expressed.