Genetic scrutiny and commercial data foundation stone for successful Poll Dorset breeding operation

OVERVIEW: Craig Wilson and Will Sullivan. Picture: Supplied
OVERVIEW: Craig Wilson and Will Sullivan. Picture: Supplied

COMMERCIAL attributes, that will make money well into the future, is the focus of one of the sheep and wool industry's most staunch advocates, Craig Wilson.

Mr Wilson has been involved in various performance trials and analysis within the Merino industry and has a keen interest in both wool and meat.

While much of his work has pertained to Merinos, he and wife Karen will hold their first Poll Dorset on-property sale at Yarragundry in October this year.

Drawing on the longstanding success of the Kentish Downs flock, which was located at Holbrook, the Wilsons plan to offer a quality draft of rams.

"I see this as an opportunity to deliver some terminal genetics," Mr Wilson said.

It is anticipated around 120 rams will go under the hammer and the auction will be overseen by GTSM principal, Michael Glasser.

Last year, Mr and Mrs Wilson purchased the stud from Rob and Jody Martin and moved the flock to Yarragundry, near Wagga.

PERFORMERS: Focus is on commercial attributes at Kentish Downs. Picture: Supplied

PERFORMERS: Focus is on commercial attributes at Kentish Downs. Picture: Supplied

Mr Wilson is a sheep consultant and classes a large number of Merino flocks across south-east Australia using a combination of breeding values and visual assessment.

He had also bought Kentish Downs rams for his clients and used the genetics in his own commercial sheep operation.

For the past 16 years Mr Wilson has run the largest evaluations of commercial Merino genetics, where bench-marking is a tool and now he plans to further extend this to terminal meat production.

"We have been quite aggressive in adding to and expanding the stud with the purchase of elite ewes from four of Australia's leading providers of Lambplan tested Poll Dorset genetics," he said.

TEAMWORK: Inspecting 2020-drop rams is Will Sullivan Stud Manager of Kentish Downs Poll Dorset stud. Picture: Supplied

TEAMWORK: Inspecting 2020-drop rams is Will Sullivan Stud Manager of Kentish Downs Poll Dorset stud. Picture: Supplied

Will Sullivan has joined the team and has previous experience working in cattle genetic management with Calfcorp at Holbrook.

Mr Sullivan said all of the Kentish Downs ewes and rams had been DNA sampled which would provide clients a guarantee that the pedigree and Lambplan data is as accurate as we can possibly have it.

"We are expecting to body weigh 760 lambs at birth in 2020 and see dystocia in clients ewes as a key trait to manage through the genetics we provide," he said.

The sale is on October 20 at 1pm.

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