Our introduction to Soft Rolling Skin (SRS) sheep came with an invitation to the "Parkdale Merino Stud" field day, held by Dr. Jim Watts and the Mudford family. The idea of low maintenance and highly productive wool sheep which did NOT need mulesing really attracted us. After perceiving the concept of handling merinos which do not attract flies and do not need mulesing, we purchased Parkdale Rams. Don Mudford "classed-in" about 30-40%, of our ewes, as a good starting point. This is confirmed by Dr. Watts who believes at least 30% of Merino flocks have SRS qualities.
The breeding strategy was a real eye opener with each future generation producing more wool with a finer micron! As well as faster growing wools, we were soon achieving "Bare breeched" animals and ceased mulesing within 4 years. We were achieving higher lambing percentages up to 150% averaging 127%.
These low maintenance and highly productive sheep have allowed us to shear every six months with staple lengths up to 85 mm per shearing. Clean fleece weight has increased remarkably, remembering "Clean" wool weight is what we are paid on!
The wether lamb carcasses are dressing 23-30Kgs at 10 -12 months, depending on the season. With supplementary feeding this period could be reduced.
The large frame plain bodied sheep are a breeze to shear with the majority of shearers "asking to come back" for the next shearing!"
Mick Day ("Bundemar", Trangie NSW)
Ph: 02 6888 9625
"The bottom 20% of our 5.8 year old ewes were shorn with exactly 6 months wool growth and cut just short of 4 kgs per head at 70 mm in length".
Noel & Norma Mudford (Gilgandra, NSW)
"My 10 month old Parkdale wether lams dressed 25 kgs and their sisters lambed at 12 months of age".
Doug Wright (Cowra, NSW)