Using the SAMM breed to produce heavier leaner lambs for the US market is helping Ross Taylor of Lake Grace to boost the sheep returns from his “Tiarra” sheep/cropping enterprise.
Ross and daughter Kelly-Anne Gooch, won the WAMMCO Producer of the month award for February with a line of 404 SAMM cross lambs that were killed at the Katanning plant on February 19.
The carcases weighed an average of 25.88 kg and realised $3.33 per kg on the WAMMCO schedule to average $91.68 per head including $5.44 for skins. One line of 10 heavy lambs averaged $105.30 (excluding skin) at the schedule price of $3.40 per kg
Over 73 percent of the draft achieved the premium 22.1 kg to 26kg class.
Ross introduced SAMMs four years ago, buying rams from Mark Edwards’ Rockdale at Dumbleyung, and says last year’s third crop of crossbred lambs provided an excellent example of SAMM performance in an extremely tough year.
“We had floods the previous summer, then very little rain during the growing season and it was remarkable how the SAMMs outperformed our other crossbreds.
“Some of the higher cross SAMMS were reaching bodyweights of around 80 kg after six months on limited paddock feed.
“The lambs went off lupin stubbles onto a feedlot diet prepared on the property. The SAMM cross lambs matured faster, without any excess fat problems”
Ross intends to move quickly to pure SAMM lambs as the best way for him to capitalise on WAMMCO’s US market for heavier, leaner lamb.
‘Tiarra’ is currently a 50/50 sheep/cropping enterprise and the livestock ratio is 50 percent Merino, 50 percent prime lamb.
Ross plans to mate around 2,000 ewes to SAMMS this year depending on the seasonal prospects.
He said the lamb/wool mix may also change to suit future seasonal/price trends.
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