Wool record price at Ongerup

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Bob GarnantCountryman
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Primaries of WA wool agent Steve Squire with Ongerup woolgrower Maurice O'Neill and partner Jade Peacock.
Camera IconPrimaries of WA wool agent Steve Squire with Ongerup woolgrower Maurice O'Neill and partner Jade Peacock. Credit: Bob Garnant

Ongerup woolgrower Maurice O’Neill said it was a great time to be a Merino producer.

Mr O’Neill and his partner, Jade Peacock, were at the Western Wool Centre last week to watch 45 bales of their 150-bale June-shorn Kurana woolclip go up for auction through Primaries of WA.

All five lines of Kurana clip sold well above 1000 cents per kilogram greasy, with the best line, 12 bales of 18.5-micron hogget fleece, selling to a farm record top-price of 1089c/kg greasy.

Primaries of WA agent Steve Squire said the Kurana line had a yield of 71.19 per cent, a length of 88mm and was very sound at 36 Newtons per kilotex.

Mr O’Neill said he was very pleased with some of the best prices he has received.

“We have had an excellent start to the season with 250mm of rain recorded since January,” he said.

“Our ewe hoggets are grazing happily in abundant paddocks and in the best condition, we certainly are reviewing our mixed farming operation.”

Mr O’Neill represents the third generation at the family farm, which is a 60-40 crop-sheep enterprise at present.

“Running Merinos is more profitable and there are more options and less risk with sheep — I am thinking of adding an extra 300 breeding ewes,” he said.

Mr O’Neill runs 2000 Poll Merino ewes and 900 wethers.

“We have been on Anglesey bloodlines for over 30 years,” he said.

Mr O’Neill buys a volume of Anglesey Poll Merino rams at the stud’s annual sale in Gnowangerup and often secures the top-price ram.

“Anglesey has provided good, consistent breeding — rams having good bone and wool and our ewes, which on average cut 4kg of wool, have been averaging over 100 per cent lambing,” he said.

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