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Dohne Merino national sale – 2021

The Dohne Merino  National sale took place on Wednesday 17 February 2021 after 2 years on account of the veterinary cancellation of the 2020 sale.   Because of Covid-19 related reasons only  rams were auctioned sold at the prelimanary calculated average price of  R35,600.     The top price  of was paid by the syndicate of Mr Dreyer van Niekerk (Lemoenkloofplase),  John Morris (University of Stellenbosch) and Mr. Bertus Mong (PP Mong Trust, Vygeboom) for the Ram JG190066 with production figures of Weaning direct 3.803 kg ; Weaning maternal -0.088 kg ; Number of lambs weaned -1.444 percent; Clean fleece weight 0.341 kg ; Fibre diameter -0.617 micron.   The Dohne Merino breed society congratulate Mr Wynand du Toit price for  attaining the top price of R120,000 for this outstanding ram.

The complete result per breeder for the 2021 National sale is as follows:

Breeder                                                                               Number of rams   average price (R)

White Wools, Molteno                                                                                 3             59,333

Suidplaas Dohnes, Protem                                                                       5              53,000

Twee Neefs, Burgersdorp/Barkly East                                                 3              44,000

FEM Dohnes, Burgersdorp                                                                       3               38,667

Univ Stellenbosch, Stellenbosch                                                          3               29,333

CCM Farms, Swartberg, KZN                                                                   5               26,600

Vlakkloof Dohnes, Bredasdorp                                                              3               15,333

Kromspruit Dohnes, Memel, FS                                                             3               15,000

Weska Dohnes, Bredasdorp                                                                    1                40,000

Mullersvlei Dohnes, Calvinia                                                                   1                25,000

Overall                                                                                                            30               35,600

Range of production values (breeding values) for the 45 rams entered for the 2021 National Dohne Merino sale

Body Weight    Wean Direct   Wean Maternal   Number lambs  Fleece wt  Fibre Diam    GM

Ave 2.793 1.989 0.147 1.998 0.290 -0.396 13.27
Min -1.0214 -0.2263 -0.7034 -3.384 0.0833 -2.219 4.45
Max 5.6641 3.8033 1.0149 8.016 0.5563 0.856 23.7

From the table above it is clear that the entire range of production values was available at the sale.   It is encouraging that rams with excellent growth (wean direct) but with not overly high body weights were selected for the sale.  The number of lambs weaned per ewe lambed for the lifetime of a ewe (Number lambs) varied between -3.384 and 8.016 percent indicating that the current breed policy in most cases led to improvement of  this key trait.  In terms of wool production, it is evident that breeders selected rams with above average clean wool weights (Fleece weight) but with the entire range of microns (Fibre diam)  across the breed.  Fibre  diameter remains the main price determining factor per kg clean wool and it is therefore noteworthy that one of the rams with the lowest breeding values for fibre fineness ever (fine wool) was sold at this national sale.  It is also of interest that the General Merit (GM) figures for these rams varied from below average in the breed to the absolute highest.    This range of figures indicates that visual aspects of excellence played a major role in the selection of top stud rams for the national sale.    Although, especially the visual  wool excellence of these rams were  noted by all interested parties, it is trusted that Dohne Merino breeders will continue to maintain a balance between meat and wool production in line with economic reality (80% Meat income vs  20% income from good quality wool).