Wellstead prime lamb producers Malcolm, Marie and Jordan Fenwick have notched up their third WAMMCO Producer of the month title, taking out the September, 2010 award with a mix of 4-5 month old SAMM/East Friesian/Dorper lambs that averaged $124.85 per head.
The 112 lambs in a draft of Dorper/East Friesian lambs weighed an average of 23.89 kg and scored $5.23 per kg on WAMMCO’s daily schedule. WAMMCO Select added $6.10 per head on 33 of the carcases, representing an extra yield of 8.4 c/kg, or $2.02 per head over the delivery.
Twenty eight lambs in the consignment averaged $129.87 per head with several heavier individuals topping $150 per head.
Also in the consignment was a line of 70 East Friesian/SAMM lambs that averaged 23.72 kg and were priced at $5.33 c/kg to return $131.53 per head and also attracted a WAMMCO Select payment of $255.79 over 58.6 percent of these lambs.
Malcolm said this week the lambs were from his first March/April lambing and half of the draft was sired for the first time by Dorper rams over SAMM/East Friesian ewes. His classer, Ray Norman of Elders Albany said the achievement of nearly $125 per head for lambs of five months or less was outstanding.
Malcolm encouraged his late father Bill to try Dohnes and some of Keith Embry’s East Friesian rams over some Merino ewes several years ago, rather than abandoning sheep altogether.
“I’m very pleased that we made that decision and also went on to trial SAMM S with the East Friesians and the Dorpers last year for the first time,” he said.
“The extra lambing was introduced because I could see opportunities to increase our lambing percentage and to capitalise on WAMMCO’s higher prices in that August/September period.
“A further bonus was that the rains came at the right time, even though they were much lighter than we would have liked.
Some of Malcolm’s other “finds” included:
- Running small mobs of mated ewes in with his cattle appears to have a beneficial effect on temperament and lambing percentage.
- The lambing percentage over 500 SAMM/Friesian ewes and about 400 remaining Merinos, on “Avalon” and Riana” was 125 percent.
- There was virtually no difference in the dressed weights of the SAMM/Friesian and SAMM/Friesian/Dorper progeny in the lambing.
He said with his harvest prospects on the Wellstead properties remaining uncertain at that stage, he was planning to keep more ewes for next year’s mating.