At Newhaven, we believe in the strength of a team – and this directly reflects in our every day work at Newhaven. Charlotte (age 10) , Henry (age 8) and George (age 6) all play a key role in mustering, and have now overtaken their mother on an individual mustering run (Jane has now been relegated to driving the motorbike back to base and setting up the yards!). A good work ethic and stock handling ability is essential at Newhaven and all 3 are now well into their apprenticeship tenure!
January 2017 saw the Newhaven team start the year off in a strong genetic fashion – with another strong sale at the Perendale NZ Stud Ram Fair, in Gore on January 10th.
As Newhaven held the highest average sale price from the 2016 sale, the first sire up was Newhaven Ram NE 692/15. He sold well to a Canterbury stud buyer, followed by the second Newhaven ram NE 756/15 selling extremely well to a Southland bidder.
Newhaven then went on to purchase a bloodline that will match well with the attributes of the Newhaven genetic targets – Hinerua 177/15, whom the Newhaven team purchased in a dual syndicate for the top price of the sale, $7,800. “He is a well balanced sire, and we believe that he will handle the challenging conditions that our Newhaven hill bred flock is run under” said Blair Smith after the sale. “We are extremely fussy when purchasing stud sires, and we believe that he ticks all of the boxes” David Ruddenklau added.
It was indeed a strong sale with an active gallery of buyers, with a full clearance of all 55 rams offered for sale.
Newhaven Perendales was recently contacted by the Palmerston North City Council to assist them in their request for some robust looking Perendale sheep to star in a sign that was being installed at Peren Park , to celebrate the huge contribution that Sir Geoffrey Peren has made to the New Zealand sheep industry that we know today.
We were honored to take part in this, and at Newhaven we have a special connection to Sir Geoffrey, given his contact with David in the early days of the Newhaven Perendales establishment – click here to see the letter that Sir Geoffrey wrote to David in the 1970s
January 2015 marked another successful Gore South Island Ram Fair for the Perendale breed – with the Newhaven Team securing the winning bid on the Stud Sire that was voted ‘Breeders Choice’ prior to the sale and the ‘Mervyn Ladbrook Cup winner’. This leading sire – B6/13 was bred by the Snowdon stud and will fit in well to the Newhaven Perendale genetic strategy.
The highest selling ram for the 2015 Auction was bred from Newhaven bloodlines – through the well known stud sire – Newhaven 1707/09.
During the recent Perendale NZ national conference, our own David Ruddenklau was presented with a great honour by his fellow members of the Perendale NZ breeding society. His contribution to the breed over the past 40 years was acknowledged when he was presented the Struan Trophy at an awards dinner at the Savoy Banquet evening.The trophy was presented to him by fellow well- respected Perendale breeder, Robert Gardyne of Oturehua.
In his address, Mr Gardyne said that David’s passion for Perendales and continual hard work to achieve the results at Newhaven and within the breed as a whole is admirable. In his reply, David said that him and Robyn were honoured indeed to be presented with this trophy, he thanked Robyn for her input into the hard work that has gone into the stud in a truely team effort –
and that he believed that the breed was in good heart and forging ahead in the industry.
Mr Gardyne himself, was later presented with the Cleaver Perpetual Challenge Shield for the best woolly hogget fleece in 2014.
The Perendale NZ national conference was a great success, and the Newhaven team were delighted to have this conference hosted by the local Otago ward.
The Perendale Sheep Society of New Zealand is proud to launch their new magazine. This profiles the Perendale as an industry- leading breed, with articles on how Perendale genetics are moving the sheep industry forward on commercial sheep operations throughout the country and details on the work that our society is doing to ensure that we lead the industry on producing a product that is in high demand from today’s savvy global consumer.
David Ruddenklau from Newhaven has written an article on the leading edge Perendale NZ National Progeny Trial that is now in it’s fourth year, and Jane Smith gives some insight to the New Zealand Perendale society’s new branding that she led a project on during 2012.
The New Zealand Ewe Hogget Competition Winners in 2012
Share their knowledge gained through using Perendale Genetics..
Preston and Tori had a clear vision for the type of ewe that would perform on their Deep Stream (Middlemarch, Otago) farm.”When we first came here, we could not buy the type of stock we wanted to farm, so set about breeding something that was worthwhile on this property,” Preston says.Their flock breeding objective is to produce a ewe that brings in two live lambs at weaning. That ewe has lambed by herself and the lambs get a drink by themselves.The Perendale was chosen because of her foraging ability, good mothering characteristics and suitability for the climate.”We used to select the best-looking sheep. But then realised that the best looking sheep don’t always have twins and it’s the number of lambs you have to sell that drives the operation. So we started putting a second ear tag in the sheep that had twins as two-tooths, recognising that they were more profitable. Then we kept the ewe lambs from those twin-tagged sheep.” Furthermore, the best rams are used over the two tooths, for maximum genetic impact.
“It’s working. Five years ago, our lambing percentage was 116%. Last year, it was 146%.”
Forest View’s sheep policy is based on all ewes being mated to Perendale rams. Once Hopes have selected their own replacements, the remaining ewe lambs are sold as replacements for other operations. Forest View’s potential replacement ewe lambs are further selected, based on additional traits, such as wool, feet and general thrift. They sell for 18kg carcass weight value, plus a premium. All male lambs are finished to 18kg plus – with 14 Feburary the ideal mean kill date.
How Hopes select their rams
Hopes have been buying rams from Newhaven Perendale stud (David and Robyn Ruddenklau and Blair and Jane Smith) since they moved to Forest View.Each season, they begin by looking at the top end of the breeder’s sale rams, as per the stud’s own records.In combination with the SIL records and eye muscle scanning results, Hopes then also consider confirmation attributes, specifically a good depth in the rear end, straight back and good cover of wool around ears.Preston points out that SIL indexes do not tell the whole story and need to be used hand in hand with confirmation. “Rams have a long lasting effect on your flock. The rams you choose in a particular year will have a 50% impact on your flock for five years, then, if you use female progeny from those rams, their impact will be 25% for another five years. Maternal rams have a huge influence down the track.”
Hopes’ top tips for selecting rams
- Before choosing your rams, decide what breed will best suit your farming operation
- Look for a breeder whose ram selection objectives are compatible with your own and will best suit your climate (ie. the rams will shift well from the stud to your farm)
- Ask to see the best rams you can afford (usually sorted on SIL overall indexes)
- When viewing a ram, we find it helpful to have the animal in a large pen where you can watch and compare different aspects of the ram. Specifically: straight back, strong pasterns, good depth of meat between anus and scrotum, good wool cover over head and between ears
- The ideal ram for our situation one that is slightly narrower in the front (wedge shaped) for ease of lambing
- Select more rams than you intend to purchase, then use the SIL records (sub-indexes and trait rankings) to trim the number back to what you want
The 2011 launch of our unique ‘Livingstone Creek’ Perendale Texel sires has proven a popular one, with steady enquiry and sales from throughout the country. We carried out a full due diligence project over a number of years before moving into this new venture to ensure that it would not impose on our leading genetic strength, Newhaven Perendales – and Livingstone Creek genetics are separately managed by us in both a practical and monitoring sense.
We are catering for those that seek a Texel infusion into high performing genetically superior Perendale bloodlines. This tends to be outside of our existing strong and loyal Perendale client base due to the proven strength of the today’s Perendale to perform exceptionally well in production parameters that were traditionally viewed as ‘meat breed’ traits – whilst maintaining the premier attributes of a dual purpose animal.
Thank you to those of you who were able to join us in May 2012, at our fifth biennial client focus day themed ‘Capturing the Gains’, to celebrate this genetic milestone – with David and Robyn sharing their journey over the past four decades since the commencement of Newhaven Perendales in 1972.
While Newhaven has grown to be one of the larger registered Perendale studs in New Zealand – our goal is not to be the largest, but to be the most preferred for high quality genuine dual purpose genetics. As David mentioned during the client focus day in May – his original vision to produce robust, efficient, high producing sheep that can excel in all areas of productive performance, rather than chasing one fashionable trait at a time – remains the same goal that we hold true to today.
Rebecca Redmond, a highly regarded global protein analyst from Rabobank’s Food and Agribusiness research division, gave us an insightful key note address on ‘Global Demand for Red Meat Protein’ with emphasis on the next two to five years and beyond. With supply increasing and demand staying conservative, it is essential that we ensure the product that we produce at the farm gate is of a quality that will meet expectations of the most discerning clientele abroad. These consumers are prepared to pay a premium for a quality product- however they expect an exceptional culinary experience in return. It makes us proud to be involved in the Perendale NZ National Progeny Trial – which focuses on such meat quality indicators – such as tenderness, pH (shelf life and appearance) and taste.
A ewe needs to be economical for the full twelve months of the year – this means that we require a breeding ewe with the ideal stature for her environment and the most effective foraging ability in challenging conditions.
Unlike many composite breeds – we make no exceptions for performance based on age of a breeding ewe – she must perform to her full potential from birth through until at least 7 years of age. Ongoing monitoring of our breeding ewes is essential to ensure that Newhaven ewes are performing to a superior standard regardless of what the climate may throw at them. Interestingly, the past two years have added to our understanding of the quest for efficiency (after taking over 450 Angus and Angus Hereford Cross cows on the new hill block – this efficiency being the ‘holy grail’ for the beef breeding industry.
This has assisted us in appreciating the importance of mirroring this in breeding ewes without compromising on production.