Buyers snap up Madrino Afrinos

Sally HincksCountryman

The Maddock family's Afrino Merino rams were in high demand at Mukinbudin last week where a top of $2500 was realised.

There was a full clearance of the 60 rams - 57 sold at auction and the remaining three were snapped up immediately after the fall of hammer.

Stud principal Evan Maddock welcomed the visitors and spoke of the family's Muka Meats business which has been going for two years.

Initially they were selling three tonnes of Afrino lamb per month but that had grown to 30 to 35 tonnes.

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He also welcomed Elders as the main sale agent before auctioneer, the upbeat Wayne Manoni, started the auction.

"Bear in mind it's raining," he said, as rain rattled on the steel roof of the Mukinbudin Ram Selling complex.

There were two volume buyers at the sale - Wellard Agri Ltd and Clonakilty Farms, Mukinbudin.

Wellard Agri livestock manager Geoff Crabb bought 11 rams to a $2500 top price - 10 under the hammer and the 11th after the sale.

The ram's weight was 88.2kg and its figures included 44 eye muscle, a 10 fat score, 22.1 microns, and a 98.7 comfort factor.

Geoff also particularly liked the next ram to be offered which he bought at $2000 (the second-top price).

This ram weighed 95.6kg and his wool figures were 18.8 microns and a 99.4CF.

"The rams will be used in our breeding program at The Grange where 15,000 ewes are joined. This is our third year using Afrinos," said Geoff, who likes the high reproductive characteristics of the Afrino.

He said he selected the top-priced ram on the basis of its good eye muscle and added that there was quite a bit of fat.

Long-time client Clonakilty Farms bought 10 rams to a $900 top price at auction plus two after the sale.

Murdoch University was represented by research officer Travis Allington who bought a ram at $950 for use in research on the effects of fat and clean fleece weight on reproduction.

"We hired one last year and this year bought one which will be mated to Merino ewes in the trial," Travis said.

Last year's mating was to 40 ewes, the numbers of which have grown to 350.

Other buyers were SJ & SE Hall, of Wellington Mill, who bought seven rams to a $1000 top.

SR & NE Parsons, of Narembeen, bought six rams to a $750 top and the rest at $600/head.

GW & BM Robinson, of Narembeen, bought four rams to an $1150 top, while Auchindail Farms, of Mukinbudin, bought four to a $750 top (twice).

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