URRBRAE SUFFOLK STUD
The stud was begun in 1970 after much discussion in1969. The idea was to increase the student’s knowledge on sheep management and stud records. The school at the time also ran a flock of merinos and merino cross ewes for wool and “fat lamb” production.
Some of the initiative came from a group of three prominent Suffolk breeders and these acted as mentors for several years while the stud was established. Les Duffield, Ern & Rodney Sharrad and Merve Mumford were the inaugural members. The stud was based on 20 ewes selected and donated by these breeders and 2 rams (including one from George Deane).
Other breeders who have helped the stud over the years are: Geoff & Ian Pfeiffer, Geoff Gale, J. Middleton, Andrew Frick, Helen Schultz, Anthony Duffield, Ian Turner, Di Swann.
Teachers and farm workers who have had charge of the stud include J. Hoile, R.A. Murray, C. Fletcher, M. Humphrys, M. Horne, P. Ancell, P. Smith, R. Johnson, R. Flower, M. Innes, C. Nichols, D. Bascomb, and P. Fanning.
The shows which have been frequented are: Saddleworth, Clare, Maitland, Crystal Brook and more commonly Gawler, Mt. Pleasant, Mt. Barker and of course the Adelaide Royal.
Some of the noted successes have been (from 1972 to the present) champion ram and ewe at Gawler and Mt. Barker, reserve champion ewe on two occasions at the Royal. Most successful exhibitor on several occasions.
The school has also trialled different methods of promoting oestrus in Suffolks, melatonin, darkness, and fecundin. We are still trialling different feeding regimes and eventually hope to succeed in producing fast growing sheep in an almost feedlot situation.
Breeding bloodlines have included Broughton Lodge, Galaxy Park, Burwood, Updown Park, Pinery, Gypsum Hill, Langley Heights, Advancer, Alkoomie, Fingerpost, Othello Park, Renrut, Allendale, Pine Ridge, Noble lee, Letts, Mitchell Gully, Stratford.
Students have been involved in all aspects of the stud. All management and showing duties fall to the students. We have produced at least two champion judges and always do well in judging and handling competitions at the various shows. We have been lucky to have benefitted from the help of many volunteers in clipping and showing schools over the years.