Farrer high school white Suffolk ram sale for 2017 'very successful'

ON THE JOB: Students Sam Fittler and Murdoch Stewart. 130917GGA04
ON THE JOB: Students Sam Fittler and Murdoch Stewart. 130917GGA04

ALL 58 lots sold to a top of $8500 at the annual Farrer white Suffolk on-property ram sale yesterday.

Stud manager Darren Smith said he was “very happy” with the results, which were “solid throughout the sale”.

The average price was $2341, bringing the sale total to $135,778.

This was Farrer Memorial Agricultural High School’s 23rd annual sale and the second time it has been run in conjunction with AuctionsPlus.

“Eighty-five per cent of the rams were in the top 10 per cent in Australia for lamb eating quality index, so they were all pretty highly ranked rams,” Mr Smith said.

“There were good rams bought for stud breeders and good rams for commercial buyers … Overall a very, very successful sale.”

Mr Smith said rams were sold to bidders in Western Australia, Queensland, Victoria and NSW.

The volume buyer was Roger Fletcher of Fletchers International, who bought 10 lots.

The top-priced lot was 47, described as a “smooth-shouldered ram with a strong topline, outstanding growth (top 2 per cent), muscle (top 20 per cent) and worm resistance (top 4 per cent)”.

It went to Wilson’s Creek at Uralla.

Mr Smith said the conditions this year had been fairly unremarkable, giving the students a good taste of an average period of stud management.

He praised the students involved in sire selection, DNA testing, crutching, shearing, vaccination, drenching, lambing supervision and the ram sale for their “commitment, effort and interest”.

“The kids do all the husbandry, all the preparation and they run the sale,” Mr Smith said.

“Hopefully they learn about how to handle sheep, how to select sheep and how to breed sheep, and hopefully they’ll go back into the sheep industry in some shape or form into the future – that’s what we’re hoping to do.”

AUCTION ACTION: Cooper Harris marks up a bid on the whiteboard. Photos: Gareth Gardner 130917GGA07

AUCTION ACTION: Cooper Harris marks up a bid on the whiteboard. Photos: Gareth Gardner 130917GGA07

AuctionsPlus’ Mick Corcoran said it had been a “terrific sale with good online activity”.

Last year the rams sold to $9000, averaging $1842 per lot.

The 2016 top-priced lot, Farrer 150096, is the second-highest sire in Australia for Lambplan’s lamb eating quality index. This year’s sale included the first sons of this sire.

LEADERSHIP: White Suffolk stud manager Darren Smith praised the students for their involvement. 130917GGA12

LEADERSHIP: White Suffolk stud manager Darren Smith praised the students for their involvement. 130917GGA12