SEVERAL new buyers and loyal repeat clients took a liking to an offering of big, fine wool rams and helped the Rangeview stud to an 88 per cent clearance at its on-property sale at Darkan last week.
The joint Primaries and Elders run sale saw 80 rams put up for offer, 40 Poll Merinos and 40 Merinos and 71 sold under the hammer to an $818 average.
This was up $86 on last year's sale, where 66 rams sold under the hammer, which was a good result given the poor season that hit the Darkan and surrounding areas this year.
The sale result continued a successful month for the stud after a win in the wool section of the recent IGA Perth Royal Show.
It took home the grand champion ewe fleece title for a fleece that tested at 19.2 micron and 99.4 per cent comfort factor and weighed in at 7.3 kilograms.
While all the essential sale numbers were heading in the right direction, another highlight was the top price which was $2700 paid for a big Poll Merino ram in the front row.
Wool advocates Ross and Shane Smith, SL & GL Smith, Wannamal, went the distance to get the four tooth ram that kicked the sale off in pen one.
The big-framed ram had a current wool test of 17.2 micron, 2.8 SD, 16.3 CV and 99.9pc CF.
Its wool attributes, combined with an ability to cut a heavy fleece were what attracted the Smiths to the ram.
The family run 5000 Merino ewes and have been micron testing their flock for 20 years.
They have also been fleece weighing their flock for several years.
"We are averaging about 17 micron across our flock," Shane Smith said.
"We concentrate on wool cut and keeping the size of our sheep up, while breeding a finer or superfine type wool.
"This ram appealed to us for his good size and nice, bright wool. We look for a bright, white wool because as we are in a reasonably high rainfall area, the wools need to be bright to withstand the moisture."
The top price ram will go into the Smith's nucleus flock to breed their own rams.
The second top price of the sale was $1900 paid by long-time clients BR & BJ Smith, Wannamal.
This ram was one of six rams bought by the Smith family in total which together averaged $1092.
New buyer Namahay Pastoral Co, Wandering, also put together a good size team putting its hand up for eight sires (five Polls and three Merinos) to a top of $1050 (paid twice) and an average of $900.
Continuing through the buyers list, another new client GH & CP Goss, Darkan, successfully bid on seven rams (five Merinos and two Polls) paying to a top of $1000 and overall average of $771.
Rangeview stalwart, Brian Sherry, Boddington, continued his support of the stud taking home seven in total to a top of $1000 and a $757 average.
Neighbour Greg Lloyd, GH Lloyd, Darkan, was in the market for eight rams paying $600 across the board, while another regular buyer Jeff Pike, PM & JS Pike, Jerramungup, bought six Merino rams paying up to $1100 at an average of $908.
Mr Pike has been buying from Rangeview since 2001 and said he is cutting more than 6kg of wool across all his adult sheep.
His flock averages 19 micron across the adult sheep but he is looking to lift that half a micron to generate even more wool cut.
Another new client JA & C Scolari, Kojonup, secured five rams, all Polls, and they paid to a top of $800 (twice) to an average of $680.
Rangeview stud co-principal Jeremy King said considering the season hasn't been great he was pleased with the result.
"It's good to see the continued confidence in Merinos," he said.