Challara leads the Merino ewe evolution

25 Aug, 2017 06:57 AM
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Challara's breeding program is placing more emphasis on recording pedigrees, such as from semen sire Challara 150268, whose semen is available for sale.
Challara's breeding program is placing more emphasis on recording pedigrees, such as from semen sire Challara 150268, whose semen is available for sale.

WITH a positive outlook for sheep meat and wool, the opportunity to invest in quality Merinos has never been greater.

The evolution of the Merino ewe over the past 15 years has achieved a level of production and ease of management that make the Merino the dam of choice.

At the Challara Poll Merino stud, the focus on producing the most productive ewe that is easy to manage in a commercial setting, has been paramount from day one.

Dedicated clients’ ewe flocks consist of large-framed plain bodied animals that carry good muscle and a stylish, long white wool.

Long-term Challara client Shane Harris, Dandaragan, said he consistently topped the wool market.

“The buyers seem to love the stylish soft Challara wool,” he said.

“The wool length achieved is great and gives us flexibility around shearing as we can meet that 75 millimetre target sooner than most others.”

Challara’s annual draft of ewes and hoggets consistently top the Moora special ewe sale and people come from far and wide to secure Challara ewes.

Carcase attributes are also high on the priority list with Challara muscle scanning since 2005 making them one of the earliest studs to do so.

The wether lambs, year-on-year, achieve great weights over the hooks, averaging 24 kilograms dressed weight and are credited on their carcase conformation.

Early maturity and fertility is also visible, with Challara annually mating its ewe weaners and receiving great conception rates and therefore speeding up the next generation of genetic improvement for its clients.

Challara’s breeding program consists of syndicate matings and single sire matings, including the ewe weaners.

Challara is placing more emphasis on recording pedigrees which can be difficult in syndicate matings.

But this improves MerinoSelect figures more rapidly and Challara is seeing far more reliance on figures from prospective clients.

Peter Wilkinson and his family wish everyone the best for spring and hope to see them at Challara’s annual on-property ram sale on Thursday, September 7, commencing at noon.

FarmWeekly

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