Loyal repeat buyers turned up at Kojonup last week for Ida Vale's 30th annual production sale, highlighting the growing popularity of shedding sheep.
The excellent presentation of 38 Western Whites, 15 White Dorpers and 16 Dorpers was a credit to stud principals Tamesha Gardner and Andrew Greenup.
First off the ranks under the Elders auctioneering team were the Western Whites, which hit the top price of the day at $5000 and averaged $1236 for the 28 that sold under the hammer from an offering of 38.
The first 10 pens of Western Whites averaged $1750.
Top-priced buyer of the breed and the sale was Paul Williams Family Trust, Narrikup.
Mr Williams said he would use the top-priced ram in his flock of 350 Dorper and Ultra White ewes.
He said he had been breeding shedding sheep for 27 years due to their ease of management and picked out the top Ida Vale ram for its all-roundedness and Australian Sheep Breeding Values (ASBV) for mature weight and intramuscular fat (IMF).
This ram had ASBVs for birthweight of 0.11, weaning weight (WWT) of 9.08, post weaning weight (PWWT) of 14.26, IMF of -0.71 and post weaning fat of -0.74.
Mr Williams also bought lot one for $2500, which he said was just slightly below the top price for most of these ASBVs but had an IMF of -0.3 which was in the top 20 per cent on LambPlan.
Ms Gardner said the top-priced ram was 75 per cent Dorper and 25pc White Suffolk-White Dorper cross.
"This is the mix we want in a Western White and with his medium to high frame size, he is an ideal example of the breed," Ms Gardner said.
"He has an excellent maternal weight and the shape to produce great maternal mothers."
Volume Western White buyer with eight rams was Tony Fisher's Eulo Grazing Company, Kojonup.
Mr Fisher has been a regular buyer of Ida Vale and his selections topped at $1500 and averaged of $1012.
Buying to a top of $1700 was LH & L Burridge, Tambellup, who went home with two Western Whites at that price.
These two rams had ASBVs for PWWT of 14.90 and 15.51 and IMF of -0.80 and -0.76 respectively.
Rangelands Farm, Dongara, paid $1600 for its single Western White ram purchase.
This ram had ASBVs for PWWT of 9.79 and IMF of -0.81.
Competition remained strong during the White Dorper section of the catalogue, with rams selling to a top of $1800 and average price of $1121 for 14 sires sold under the hammer.
Top priced buyers were
PR & LR Coles, Wagin, who paid $1800 twice and amassed a team of five White Dorper rams.
Their top priced purchases had ASBVs of 10.62 and 7.34 for PWWT and -0.40 and -0.43 for IMF respectively.
Also active in the White Dorpers was Eulo grazing, buying three rams to a top of $1400.
Their $1400 ram had ASBVs of 9.45 PWWT and -0.51 IMF.
Elders Kojonup also bought three White Dorper rams for $800 each.
Ida Vale offered 16 Dorpers, of which 13 sold under the hammer for an average price of $1200.
Top price in this section of pens was $1200 paid twice by Banyanda Farms, Walkaway and Vivigani Pastoral Company, which was a volume buyer taking home four rams.
Banyanda also bought a Dorper for $1100 and four for $800 each.
Kojonup Elders livestock representative Liam Want said given the current market conditions, the sheep offered by Ida Vale sold well.
"A lot of regular buyers came today and there were a few new faces," Mr Want said.
"Prices were as expected and down a little from last year, generally reflecting what's going on in the sheep market.
"In the end, there was a good clearance of rams."
Ms Gardner said she was happy with the final result of the sale considering the state of the sheep industry.
"We had a great clearance and some new buyers," Ms Gardner said.
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