Up against 16 other Merino flocks, maiden ewes presented by Brian and Maddy Lowe of “Pineville”, took top honours in the 2019 ANZ Agribusiness Crookwell Flock Ewe competition.
The Carrabungla-blood ewes placed first in the short wool section before eventually being determined the overall winners by judges Matthew Coddington of Roseville Park stud, Dubbo and Georgia Walters of Merani Park stud, Dalgety.
The ewes were described by Ms Walters as a top line of stylish and multi-purpose Merino ewes.
“You can definitely see the profitability in them with the size and scale of each ewe teamed with their condition and coverage,” Ms Walters said.
“It is great to see they have followed some lifetime ewe management and have drafted ewes at scanning and looked after those ewes more appropriately for their needs.”
Mr Coddington said what impressed him was they were run at 12 dry sheep equivalent (dse) to the hectare, but having been fed to still express their genetic potential.
“They are a line of very even sheep that are well muscled, very functional, long muzzles, deep jaws – ewes that want to survive and thrive,” Mr Coddington said.
“They are that modern type of Merino that we are all trying to breed. The dual-purpose type that are competing against the maternal and terminal breeds.”
The Pineville flock recorded a 92 per cent lambing in 2018 with an average fibre diametre fleece line of 17.8-micron.
Brian, together with his wife Maddy and mother Virginia have entered the competition over the last six years, placing forth in 2016 in the short wool section as well as being awarded the future development award in only their second year of entering.
He said it’s fair to say a lot of what he has learnt has stemmed from being part of the competition which has made a considerable difference to the productivity of his flock.
As well as looking to increase his Merino ewe numbers, Mr Lowe said his plans for the near future are to be taking more selective measurements and side sampling.
Placing second in the short wool section were another Carrabungla-blood flock entered by the McDonald family, ‘Aberdeen’, Graeme Hewitt of ‘Wongalea’ placed third with his Rogara/Carrabungla-blood maidens and forth place went to the Lowe family of ‘Innisvale’ with their Royalla-blood entry.
First place in the long wool section went to Tom and Georgie McGuinnes, Bigga Station, with their Grassy Creek- blood maiden ewes, Shannon Arnall, ‘Carinya’, on Thalabah-blood placed second and was voted the People’s Choice, Pat and Emily Carlon, Lower Sylvia Vale, with their Demondrille-blood flock were third and forth place went to Peter and Cheryl Anderson, ‘Coral Ridge’, with maidens based on Stockton-blood.
Pineville, along with the long-wool winners, Bigga Station, will now head into the Southern Tablelands Championships against flocks from Gunning, Boorowa and Taralga on March 15.