If you want to take advantage of the high lamb prices but don't have the time or money for the traditional inputs associated with intensive care animals, then the Australian White might be the breed for you.
Two pioneers of the breed, Baringa Sheep Stud and Seriston Pastoral Company, will unite to offer first-rate rams at the Seriston on-property sale at Avenue Range, via Lucindale, South Australia, on Monday, October 17, and again on Friday, October 21, for the fifth annual Northern Pastoral Australian White Sale, at the Jamestown Showgrounds, SA.
The studs will offer 60 of their best stud and flock rams at Avenue Range, and they've selected a further 100 rams for the Jamestown sale.
The Baringa/Seriston Australian White doesn't require shearing, crutching, lice treatment or mulesing. They're also fast maturing, allowing them to get to trade weight more quickly, and they produce meat that is high in eating quality.
Baringa Sheep Stud owner Brayden Gilmore said the rams catalogued for the upcoming sales will be unshorn and unfed on sale day.
"This will allow potential buyers to see how well they perform in the paddock," Mr Gilmore said.
In 2008, Baringa joined forces with four other studs to help create the first Australian White Sheep. By 2012, they had developed their own genetic base and withdrew from the foundational flock.
Not long after, Seriston took part in an embryo transfer program to set up a sister stud on their genetics. Since then, both studs have employed the latest technologies and they've come along in leaps and bounds.
Mr Gilmore said when the breed was started because many farmers in his region were starting to go out of sheep and were getting primarily into cattle.
"This was mainly due to the amount of extra work involved in sheep. So we set out to produce an easy care animal which didn't require as much shearing. We wanted to breed a sheep that a handpiece would never have to touch.
"We knew it would take time to really set in concrete and make sure our results were consistent but it actually came together a lot faster than any of us expected it to. Now, 90pc of our flock have never had a handpiece near them. That's how far we've come."
Seriston Pastoral Company owner Anthony Hurst said a lot of work has gone in on the type of hair they have on the sheep and the gene they have in there for the shedding capabilities.
"What we're finding now is that a lot of our sheep are not getting any wool at all. It's just a winter coat that they're shedding," Mr Hurst said.
While the Baringa/Seriston Australian White's skin is one of its main selling points, it's by no means it's only one. They're a lower care animal across the board and thanks to their state of the art breeding program they've managed to skip through the generations in just eleven years.
With 2000 stud breeding ewes, Baringa and Seriston are the largest user of ASBVs in the Australian White breed.
"We're starting to see great results coming through our ASBVs, with many animals sitting in the top percentiles for BWT, PFAT, IMF and SHRF5," Mr Gilmore said.
"We utilise DNA, genomics, electronic verification, embryo transfers, trait measurements and indexation to track the progress of our breeding programs and to ensure consistent results."
He said their large breeding base allows the studs to continue focussing on hoof structure, skin type and overall correctness to supply their clients with genetics that are sure to handle their conditions.
"While comparing data against all other breeds we also continue to enter selected sires into the resource flock to increase the accuracy of our data and ensure our animals continue to improve on all traits.
"As a founding member and stud of the Australian White breed our clients can be assured all animals are purebred and of the highest quality."
Both studs also work with Sheep Genetics to track their progress for eating quality, to ensure that their lambs are even more valuable to clients.
Baringa and Seriston bloodlines are revolutionising the flocks of commercial breeders in a multitude of climates. From the coast to inland to tropical Queensland, the feedback they've received is that the animals are adapting quickly and thriving.
"Over the past three years we've seen a large increase in Australian Whites being used over maternal composite flocks with the advantage of live lambs and a push towards less shearing," Mr Gilmore said.
"The biggest saving we're hearing back on though is the saving of time. They're spending less time having to shear them and crutch them and put them through shearing sheds and chasing flies. We don't have an issue with flystrike either because of their coat," he said.
"They're also non-mulesing and we're even starting to leave the tails on them as well because they've got a shorter tail which is full hair.
"We've done studies which have found that ewes with a tail can breed at the same percentages as ewes without a tail. So, we're finding that's a real positive and it's just one less piece of handling."
Both sales will start at 11am. They'll be interfaced via the AuctionsPlus online platform, which is where photos and videos of all the rams selected for the sale will be available to view.
Additionally, the studs are offering free delivery where possible to buyers.
For more information contact Brayden Gilmore from Baringa Sheep Stud on 0409 363 524 or Anthony Hurst from Seriston Pastoral Company on 0428 332 676.