Latest News February 2014





Finished lambing with not one *Hansie.  (*Foster lamb)

Started shearing.  7th October 2013  with a Shearing Team Started by DG Snyman from Philippolis.  The service they deliver is very professional. The sheep all come out looking the same.  One Technique is used to train the team and  the result is well shorn sheep.  Very little double cuts, very few cuts on the sheep.

Skeerspan 2013 004

DG Snyman, With  Jurgens on his left and Wian on his right.   Jaco in the fore ground and Lande right the two fleece throwers.

DG Showing the team what is expected

DG Showing the team what is expected

August 2013 and the Stud ewes have started lambing.  So far the condition of the stock is good.  The days are mild to warm with minus 5 degrees Celsius for the nights.   The Ewes have enough milk . The flock ewes will start lambing on Thursday. (8th August).This year being one of the harshest years for years…Very Dry every where…Nature is showing up what sheep cannot make it in the harsh conditions.   These sheep have come out with flying colours so far.

Finished lambing the first week in September..We had bitterly cold nights with warm days and towards the end of lambing some very hot days.  Must say I prefer the colder weather for lambing.  The hot days the ewes left their lambs and went in search of water.   Some find their way back to the lambs others if there is the least disturbance can’t find their lambs.   That means you need to search for the lambs.   The biggest problem during lambing was the “konkel” ewes (those who insist on starting to nurse another ewes lambs.)   The mothering instinct is so extreme that it becomes bothersome.   We fostered many lambs onto ewes that lost their lambs because of cold or a predator catching the lamb.   At the end of lambing we had two lambs looking for mothers.  The one was a ewe that had died in the veld and the other a twin which was just not getting enough milk.  The only ewes available were two ewes who had lost lambs about three days previously.  Wally took a chance and low and behold they took the lambs.   Ewes that just did not want their lambs were six of which three were in the first few days and which turned out that there were stray dogs amongst the sheep.   Really hard on a maiden ewe not to get rattled.  Lambs pulled off were around eight of which 95% ram lambs.   This was very low this year as it is also something were cull for.    For the enitre lambing I would put out about three winter blocks about every fifth day or so.  I think this was to satisfy ourselves more than that it was necessary for the sheep to receive anything.   Their condition was good and the milk flow good and the lambs strong.

The consistant culling for bad traits is now starting to show during lambing.

The ewes with lamb are all on natural veld with a lick three times a week.  This might be reduced to twice a week so that the sheep do not lie and wait for something and go out and graze.   The dry sheep are not receiving anything at the moment.

18th September…CLASSED THE MAIDEN STUD AND FLOCK EWES – this week.    The BKB agent Jan Joubert was given orders to be strict.  Colour on the feet creeping belly were what he threw out the most and ewes that were not as big as the others even if they had good wool etc.  When he was finished.  There were still 150 ewes to many.   The wool of extreme length and finess of wool was consistent throughout.   To me looking over the flock It did not appear to be Hogget (year old)  ewes but young maidens.  The size is very impressive throughout.  120mm length of wool was a general sight to see.   It does start to fall in the category of overgrown.   So for someone who wants to shear every six months, eights months this would be excellent.

October 2013.

Conditions have worsended and still no rain.   We have needed to keep giving lick to the sheep and cattle.

As at 23rd December we have not had much rain.   Parts of the farm so little that there is no good grazing and Wally has moved ewes with lambs to parts were some rain has fallen and the dry sheep to the drier camps.    The stock are in fair condition although you can see the lambs are not what we are use to but under these extremely harsh conditions are fairing better than what you see elsewhere.

Flock ewes are busy lambing and a ewe has just dropped triplets all three doing well and looks like mum will be able to rear them herself.

Triplets in August 2013 004

Blue tongue remains a problem.  The Onderstepoort vaccine has not given us good coverage this year and we have had problems like we have never had in the passed.    These same reports come in from Farmers in different parts of the district that Older sheep re-vaccinated this year are getting Blue Tongue.    The young sheep receiving their first innoculation had huge problems this year..every time you innocualted in the next week you would bring in the sick sheep.

Results for 2013 Performance testing of the Rams and Ewes are:

RAMS  Microns average 16.74

Highest Micron of which there was one 19.2 and the Lowest is 15.5 microns.

Average Weights on the veld is 53 Kg at 12 months.

Average Fleece weight for the group was 3.08 KG


Microns average – 16.7

The Lowest micron is 15.1 and the highest is 18.9

Average weight at 12 months on the veld is 40KG.

Average Wool Weight is 2.5 KG at 12 Months

Average clean yeild is 70.1%


The Average Micron for the wool clip of 2012 was 17.9 After a very good season.

The wool clip of 2011 measured an average of 17.8 Micron.     The average price was R76.00 ( Clean wool)  Kgs Wool sold this includes Lox 1 & Lox 2, CBP etc.   We like to know what our sheep bring in not the top price for a bale or two of the fleece wools.    The fine wool has not recovered  as much as the stronger micron wools.   Italy being the biggest buyer of fine wool is feeling the European economic pressure.   With an average of 3.4Kg wool per sheep this includes about 40% of the sheep being young sheep (hoggets) and included in the numbers are the before the winter lambs (autumn) being topped.

From another farming enterprise where we took over the sheep on the Farm. In four years the average micron has dropped from 21 micron to 18.7 micron.

Breipaal :   Weaning average for the lambs that have just been weaned from the August lambing is 112%.  They weigh an average of  Flock 36Kg and for the stud  Lambs 38Kg.  The stud are also run on the veld and do not get better conditions than the flock sheep.

Results for Performance Tested Rams Born August 2010 are:

Average Micron  17.06 micron

Average Wool weight : 3.00Kg

Average Body  weight : 55 KG

66% clean yield for the wool  highest 76 %

Results for the Ewes:

Average micron : 17.2 Micron

Clean yield 68.4 %  HIghest 79.5%

Body weight 44 KG

Wool weight . 2.5 KG

Did Falkirk testing in February.

The feedback from Ian Walsh is that they are doing block testing in New Zealand and it is being conducted over a period of months on about 50 000 carcasses from his clients.   With the better shouder lambs being slaughtered there is   2Kg   more meat on those lambs than a lamb with an incorrect shoulder.   (See Page on Livestock index)   The Optimal sheep.

Our own Falkirk (Livestock Index) Rams test results show what an improvement is happening each year.   12 Super Elite,  30 Elite A and 41 Elite  the tail enders 20 High Standard and 9 standard.   These lower standard rams are also the ones being ridden by the other rams.   The libido of our rams is so high that it has become a major problem for us.    We are thinking of bringing forward our Sales date to be able to break up the ram group.    They loose condition as they are permanantly “serving” these rams.

Livestock Index for  – 2011 results were –  No-  Super Elite,  4 Elite AA, 16 Elite A, 29 Elite, 20 High Standard and 26 Standard. )   The improvement is huge and will surely jump even more every year as the better maiden ewes come in.   It is this optimal conformation that our clients benefit from and why their lambs become heavier so quickly.    The condition of your stock is also always better from these optimal sheep.

We had triplets from the stud ewes and the result on the Livestock Index are One  is an Elite A, The other one an Elite and the last one a High Standard.   The one set of Quadruplets is a High standard.   The mothers raised these lambs themselves.   There are many many twins in the rams group.


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