White River snags double delight in hogget comp | Port Lincoln Times
Minnipa stud White River Merinos well and truly impressed in the Elders Hogget of the Year competition during Monday’s Eyre Peninsula Pre-Sale Expo at Wudinna, taking out top spot and also placing third.
With COVID-19 having forced the cancellation of the 2020 expo held at the Wudinna showgrounds, the event was well and truly back in style this year.
Eighteen studs from across Eyre Peninsula had rams on display, which were a mixture of stud reserves, and rams available for sale at on-property sales, or by private selection, later in the year.
The top ram, White River 737, was named the winner out of a field of 16 ram hoggets, with a ram from Roemahkita, Cummins, awarded second place, and a Collandra North sire from Tumby Bay rounding out the top four.
Sired by Moorundie 062, White River’s first place ram carried fleece measurements of 19.3 micron, with 2.9 standard deviation, 15.2 coefficient of variation and 99.3 per cent comfort factor.
A May 2020-drop, it weighed 131 kilograms, with a fat depth of 8.5 millimetres, and a 46mm eye muscle depth.
Judge Geoff Davidson, from Moorundie, Keith, said the winner was a “very modern ram”.
“It had a good meaty rear end, good doing ability, and was very good on his feet,” he said.
“The final four were all very good sheep, slightly different types, but the winner was the most complete sheep, with great carcase and good wool, showing a true balance of a good modern sheep.”
White River’s third-placed ram, White River 740, weighed 138kg and measuring 21.9M, with 3.5SD, 16CV and 98.1CF, with a 7.9mm fat depth and 48.4EMD. It was also sired by Moorundie 062.
The second-placed Roemahkita 200058 was AI-sired by “Smithy” – a Glenlea Park ram which made $100,000 at the 2019 Adelaide Ram Sale – and had fleece measurements of 20.7M, 3.4SD, 16.4CV, 99.1CF, and had a 8.5mm fat depth and 41EMD.
Mr Davidson was impressed by the entire line-up, and all sheep on display.
“The EP commercial sheep producers certainly have some very good spots to go and buy rams,” he said.
“When you look through the whole shed, the quality of sheep in this region is outstanding – the guys are doing a very good job.”
White River has performed well in the competition before, most recently winning in 2018. Both first and third place will be kept as stud reserves.
“We’re looking forward to put them over some of our top ewes later in the year,” stud principal Wes Daniell said.
Mr Daniell, who is also president of the EP Stud Merino Breeders Association, said it had been an excellent day at the showground, with the biggest crowd he had ever seen at the event, and lots of optimism in the air thanks to good June rainfall through most regions.
“It’s great to be back (after the cancellation of last year’s event), and the standard on show is an absolute credit to the breeders,” he said.