A focus on the true commercial traits of early growth and consistency have shined through at Valley Vista Poll Dorset stud this year.
The Scott family see proof of these traits within their own stud and commercial operations, and this year have taken home major lamb accolades from major sheep shows to back it.
Valley Vista Poll Dorset autumn-born lambs were selected as the best at the NSW Dorset Championships in Cowra in June, at the Australian Sheep & Wool Show in Bendigo in July and again at the Australasian Dorset Championships back in Bendigo at the weekend.
The Scott's, who run 1200 stud Poll Dorset ewes alongside a commercial cattle herd at Coolac, and a 1600 head Merino flock at Tarcutta, were keen to showcase the calibre of their lambs this year, as producers will be particularly keen to get lambs as heavy as possible as early as possible and straight off of mum.
Most impressively, five-month old ewe lamb, Valley Vista 230207, was awarded the National Poll Dorset Champion of Champions Ewe for 2023 on Saturday, coming up against major award winners from across the country, all of which were mature sheep.
And in a true testimony to the years of breeding at Valley Vista, the champion ewe was sired by Valley Vista 210155, a ram which himself won the National Poll Dorset Champion of Champions Ram at the same event in 2022.
The Valley Vista Poll Dorset stud was founded in 1976 and moved from its original home at Burrumbuttock, to Coolac, NSW in 1990.
The stud was expanded in 1991 when Valley Vista stud principals Andrew and Donna Scott purchased the entire Meadow Creek stud from the late Ernie Britt.
There was further expansion for the stud in November 2006 when the Scotts purchased 550 ewes and stud sires from the Gererdan stud, which at the time was among the top studs in Australia.
In 2008 Joe, James and Luke Scott founded the Valley Vista Park stud with the purchase of 18 stud ewes at the Kismet dispersal sale.
The Scotts have continued to add to their genetic base over the years with purchases of genetics from the Armdale, Armdale Park, Tattykeel, Hillden, Kurralea and Graythorn studs.
Combined the studs have built the numbers up to approximately 1000 stud ewes to select from, allowing the stud to cull heavily.
When selecting rams for their stud's breeding program the Scott's have placed emphasis on traits such as ease of lambing and high growth rates.
Valley Vista's next on-property sale will be held at their Coolac headquarters on Friday, October 6. The stud will offer its annual spring draft of 162 Poll Dorset rams, and the sale will be integrated with AuctionsPlus, with both morning tea and lunch provided.
Inspect the sale rams from 9.30am with the sale kicking off through Nutrien and Elders at 1pm.
Armdale are celebrating 85 years of stud breeding this year making them amongst a select few of the oldest registered Poll Dorset studs still operating today with third generation clients continuing to purchase Armdale rams.
Reflecting on the past it is incredible to think that during this time Armdale has sold thousands of rams to both stud and commercial clients.
These prime lamb breeders have produced millions of lambs and the stud's genetics have played a major role within the lamb industry and provided food on the table, not just in Australia, but throughout the world.
The stud was founded in 1938 as a Dorset Horn stud by John and his son Alby Armstrong.
They saw the need to produce a quality sire for local lamb producers in the Marrar district.
In 1957 the entire Dorset Horn stud was transferred to the Poll Dorset Stud following the founding of the Australian Poll Dorset breed.
Alby's son Noel and his wife Shirley took over the reins of Armdale in 1960.
It was from this point the stud began its development to build on the stud's reputation, setting many benchmarks for both stud and commercial breeders and growing to become one of the leading studs in Australia today.
Armdale's expansion continued in 1988 with the part purchase of well-known Austeco Stud from South Australia.
This increased flock numbers to meet the growing demand for quality terminal sires.
From the early 1980's Armdale cemented their place as one of the best and most successful studs, winning Interbreed classes at every major show in Australia, including Melbourne, Sydney and Canberra Royals.
Following the death of Noel, his family has continued his legacy of breeding the best possible rams through careful selection of genetics.
They have retained he best of the young rams to use in the stud, and carefully select stud rams from outside breeders, ensuring the high standards within their breeding programs are maintained.
Today's modern rams are well-muscled, early maturing, big long meaty rams with good hindquarters and balanced figures compared to the short thickset type ram that was produced in the early years.
Stockcan is an important performance recording tool at Armdale as it provides accurate measurements of individual sheep including eye muscle area and fat depth.
Figures are provided on all rams and displayed in the sale catalogue and on sale day, making it an affective guide for buyers who select on certain traits.
Armdale's sale rams have recorded great results this year for eye muscle area.
These figures are highlighted by the fact no rams are supplementary fed and are run on lucerne pastures with access to lucerne hay.
This has ensured that rams are ready to work as soon as buyers take them home.
Armdale's 48th annual on-property sale will see 100 high quality Poll Dorset rams on offer giving purchasers the opportunity to put 85-years-worth of pedigree breeding and genetics into their flocks and lamb production.
Armdale is the only Poll Dorset stud in NSW that can offer this opportunity.
The sale commences at 1pm with inspection of sale rams from 11 am morning of the sale.
The vendors Shirley and Helen Armstrong invite all past, present and prospective clients to come along and help celebrate this momentous milestone.
For further details or to request a catalogue, contact the selling agents, James Croker Nutrien on 0427 753 533 or Glen Fordyce, Elders on 0428 317 059.
Myack Poll Merino Stud will hold an open day with rams for sale on Tuesday, September 26, offering 40 'top of the drop' polled Merino rams.
Alongside the wool on display, those coming along can enjoy the barbeque provided. Buyers can purchase rams through private sale from 10 am until 3 pm, and any of the top rams that are not purchased will be available by private treaty.
Rams on offer include the sons of leading sires Lachlan 007, Lachlan 190 and others.
Lachlan 007 is the son of the 2018 Dubbo champion March shorn ram Willandra 18, and was purchased for $11,500 as the top-priced ram at the Lachlan Merino ram sale in 2020.
Our philosophy is to maximise fertility, breeding dual purpose type sheep that can produce meat as well as heavy wool cuts, with great doing ability and confirmation. The flock have been bred on Charinga bloodlines, and for the past nine years, have used Lachlan Merino rams.- Gerald Woodhouse
Lachlan 190 has produced elite rams in the Lachlan Merino stud flock through artificial insemination.
Attendees can view Australian Sheep Breeding Values for all rams in the sale catalogue on the day or request these values prior to the sale day by contacting the stud.
The family-owned and operated stud was founded in 1934 and has been breeding polled sheep for the past thirteen years.
In 2021, 250 stud ewes were transferred to a poll flock (F. No. PN1367).
Stud breeder Gerald Woodhouse said the open day and ram sale will be located on-property at 139 Blythes road (via Mates Gully road), Tarcutta.
"Our philosophy is to maximise fertility, breeding dual purpose type sheep that can produce meat as well as heavy wool cuts, with great doing ability and confirmation," Gerald said.
"The flock have been bred on Charinga bloodlines, and for the past nine years, have used Lachlan Merino rams."