Moojepin reaches a top of $7250
A Katanning-bred Multi Purpose Merino ram, born as a twin, with a comprehensive set of figures, reached a top price of $7250 at the Thompson family’s Moojepin ram sale last Tuesday.
Overall, 136 rams were offered through Nutrien Livestock, with 134 sold for an average price of $2269, up $67/head on last year when 124 rams sold for an average price of $2202.
The sale was a WA record for the number of lots sold online in a single vendor sale with 52 of the 138 lots selling through AuctionsPlus for an average price of $2197.
AuctionsPlus commercial operations officer Teeah Bungey said the record only stood for about 30 minutes after a York prime lamb ram sale sold 59 lots to online buyers.
“The Moojepin sale attracted widespread interest, with 47 registered bidders logging in from Victoria, New South Wales, South Australia, Queensland, Tasmania and from within WA,” she said.
“The 52 lots purchased online were secured by bidders in Victoria, New South Wales and South Australia.”
Ms Bungey said the online sale catalogue provided a video as well as Australian Sheep Breeding Values on every lot and was viewed 1461 times.
The sale topper, Moojepin 19-0051, sired by Moojepin 16-0003, was sold to repeat buyer Kane Page, of Pingelly, who said he was selecting for good growth.
“I was mainly selecting for good post-weaning weight along with a comprehensive set of figures,” he said. “The ram was in the top 10 per cent for muscle, genetic fat and staple length.”
Moojepin 19-0051 recorded in the top 10 per cent for seven ASBV traits including 8.18 PWT, 2.25 YEMD, 1.14 YFAT, 25.08 YSL and 8 per cent for NLW.
Mr Page said he had been producing non-mulesed wool for the past three years off the plain-bodied types from Moojepin bloodlines.
The Page family also secured another ram for $4500 from lot 121.
Moojepin stud co-principal David Thompson said more focus at the stud had been on a broader range of traits which included number of lambs weaned and worm egg count.
“Having ceased mulesing 16 years ago, we are also seeing pressure being applied to the early breech wringle and early breech cover scores,” he said.
In opening the sale, Mr Thompson’s son, Hamish, said Moojepin was pushing growth, muscle and fat — fertility drivers. “The sheep industry will go backwards if no lambs are on the ground,” he said.
The $5250 second top-priced ram sold through AuctionsPlus, with Kojonup producer Kit Anderson the under-bidder on that ram.
Mr Anderson, who trades as Slabhut Grazing, at Kojonup, secured rams for $5000 and $4500.
“We were chasing growth rate, Moojepin’s fertility and resilience is a given,” he said.
“We put growth first, while trying to keep as much wool as we can.”
Buying off the top line and throughout the catalogue, David Meyer, of Broomehill, a 16-year client, secured a total of eight rams to a top of $3750 and average price of $3032.
“Since I have been selecting balanced figured Moojepin rams, I have increased the fertility of our flock by 35 per cent,” he said.
“Selecting for wool, growth and carcase traits, our returns for the meat trade have been significantly improved.”
Wagin woolgrower Rob Rex, of Westendale Grazing Co, at Wagin, secured a total of nine rams to a top of $3500 and average price of $2306.
Mr Rex, a client of 10 to 15 years, said he was selecting for fat and eye muscle depth for his commercial flock of 10,000 Merinos.
Mr Thompson said a new buyer, trading as Murdeduke Agriculture, near Winshelsea, at Victoria, secured 28 rams via online bidding.
“This buyer, a composite prime lamb breeder, was interested in ASBV measured Merinos,” he said.
Murdeduke farm manger Lachie Wilson said he was looking to convert his 5000-head composite flock with the Moojepin infusion.
“We selected for fat and eye muscle depth, and are looking to maintain fertility and put a bit more wool on our composites,” he said.
The Thompson family offered a ram with all proceeds donated to the Motor Neurone Disease Foundation. The ram was secured by Glenkeith Grazing Co, at Qualeup, for $2500.
Top price: $7250
Get the latest news from thewest.com.au in your inbox.
Sign up for our emails