Five rams passed last year’s top price at last Wednesday’s Pimbena Poll Merino’s 24th annual on-property sale, which saw a good crowd with a majority of repeat buyers.
Held at Wirrulla, the sale cleared 39 of the 70 rams on offer.
The average price increased from 2016 to $1074, although the number of sales dropped significantly from 72 sold 12 months ago to just more than 50 per cent on this occasion.
The top price of $2800 for Lot 4 was paid by Bill Walker of Classings Limited out of Murray Bridge.
At 99 kilograms, the ram carried an 18.3 micron fleece with 3.3 standard deviation and a 99.4 per cent comfort factor.
It also had a yearling clean fleece weight of 16 and yearling carcass weight of 7.3.
The 13-month-old was sired by Southrose 405.
Mr Walker of Classings led the volume buying with 13 rams and said the top pick was favourable because of its ability to maintain weight and quality in testing conditions currently experienced.
“They are born and raised in less than favourable conditions, so there is a tenacity present – they are raised tough yet produce great results for many of our clients.
“His growth for age was tremendous and his skin pushed out a fibre loaded with density and length with a lustrous bold crimp.
“I’m a bit selfish with this bloke and haven’t yet chosen which direction his new home will be such is the calibre of his quality and pedigree.”
Mr Walker said it was a very flat sale, reflecting the conditions in the area.
The second-highest sale, Lot 8, fetched $2500.
The 103kg ram carried an 18.8 micron fleece with 2.6 standard deviation and a 99.6 per cent comfort factor.
Pimbena stud principal Leslie Hamence said his aim was to breed rams with high yielding weights and clean fleece weights with positive fat and positive eye muscles.
He also said it was an inconsistent sale.
“It went a bit below expectations – it was above what I was expecting at the start and then it fell away,” he said.
“But the highest was above 2016 and in the end we had five above that price, so it was a good top end which was above expectations.”
Mr Hamence said a few regular buyers were not present, which had an affect on the sale as it did not add to the competition but there were three new buyers.
Landmark SA auctioneer Gordon Wood said it was a similar auction to last year.
“It would have been nice to clear a few more, we sold just over 50 per cent and they were mostly to return buyers,” he said.
“It was similar to last year but the average was up.
“There’s good value buying for the amount of investment Les has made in the genetics and performance recording.”