Shalimar Park tops at $2000
The van Eyk family's Shalimar Park Merino stud annual on-property sale hit a $2000 high at "Shalimar", Wollun, last Wednesday.
Of the 60 rams offered 35 sold to average $914.
While the clearance and and average were down slightly on last year’s result, Landmark Merino specialist Brad Wilson, Dubbo, said it is an isolated issue in the New England.
“There is a shortage of Merino ewes being joined to Merino rams in the area and whilst the wool market is good, we need to see it stabilise for 12 months for the superfine wool growers to capitalise,” he said.
The van Eyk family lost one regular volume buyer this year due to the client's decision to change direction and go into crossbreds.
“This is an unfortunately common trend at the moment,” Mr Wilson said.
Frank Presnell "Frama", Ben Lomond, has used Shalimar Park bloodlines "forever" in his self-replacing flock.
The nonagenarian still runs about 1200 Merinos, with an average adult fibre diametre of 17-micron, and the hoggets in the mid 14-micron range.
Mr Presnell has used Shalimar Park rams for more than 50 years and likes the wool they produce and the large frame means good returns when they are cast-for-age and sold to slaughter.
"We run all our wethers, then sell them at five years to Fletchers and the always make good money," Mr Presnell said.
The top-priced15.4-micron ram had a greasy fleece weight of 125 per cent, a standard deviation (SD) of 3.1, a yield of 71.5pc and a comfort factor (CF) of 99.9pc.
David and Sandra Edmonds, along with their children Joey and Sarah, put together a draft of five rams.
Mr Edmonds said he was looking for large framed rams with stylish wool that would be joined to 380 maiden ewes at his Armidale properties "Rosewood" and "Marchvilla".
He has used Shalimar Park rams in his self-replacing Merino flock for about 15 years.
"About 80 to 90 per cent of our ewe wool is bought by New England Wool for the Italian market," Mr Edmonds said.
"Since we have been buying rams here we have always been happy with the nice, stylish wool."
Last year, despite a lacklustre superfine market, the Edmonds sold ewe wool for 1630c per kilogram, which at the time was 200c to 300c above the market.
Shalimar Park principal, Joe van Eyk said he really appreciated the support at the sale..
"It's been tough in the superfine wool market in the last few years but there have been some significant improvements in the new year,” he said.
"With our breeding, we have been concentrating on improving production and it's starting to come through in the rams.”
Elders Walcha auctioneer Nick Hall described the van Eyk family as extremely hard working.
"They work eight days a week in my book," he said.
"Whether it's in the show ring or in their commercial enterprise, the Shalimar sheep perform well at shows and wether trials.
"The stud is backed up by Shalimar Park's commercial flock."
Bob and Brett Cummins from Deepwater bought three rams for an average of $1000 and Michael Forest, "Boro Creek", Wollun went home with four rams, as did Wendy Townsend, Guyra.
The majority of buyers on the day were repeat clients.
Selling agents Elders Walcha and Landmark Armidale.