AgriLife Research ram fetches highest price since 1994

Writer: Steve Byrns, 325-653-4576, s-byrns@tamu.edu
Contact: Dr. Dan Waldron, 325-653-4576, d-waldron@tamu.edu

SONORA – The Sawyer Ranch of Sonora set a record for the highest price paid for a ram in the past 18 years at the Annual Ram Performance Test sale on March 16 at the Texas AgriLife Research Station at Sonora, sale officials said.

Eddie Sawyer, the ranch’s owner, paid $3,700 for the Texas AgriLife Research-bred ram. Sawyer in turn sold one of his rams, the test’s highest indexing animal, to Lorelei Hankins of Rocksprings for $850.

Dr. Dan Waldron, AgriLife Research geneticist and test coordinator, said 15 rams sold at auction following the completion of this year’s test.

“The rams sold for a total of $15,400 and averaged $1,026.66 per head, which is considerably more than last year’s price of $794 per head,” Waldron said.

“The high-selling ram that Sawyer bought was 8830 TAES,” Waldron said. “Sawyer’s high-indexing ram was 1104 Sawyer Ranch, a commercial ram.”

Hankins, T. Stamatakis of Utah and the Campbell-Mayer Live Oak Ranch of Sonora were all volume buyers, purchasing three rams apiece at $1,950, $2,650 and $2,100 on their respective three-head totals, Waldron reported.

Burk Lattimore of the American Rambouillet Sheep Breeders Association, presented certificates of merit to Dr. Charles “Butch” Taylor, superintendent of the Sonora AgriLife station, for three AgriLife Research-bred rams that met the association’s performance requirements during the test.

The animals on the test come from some of the world’s top flocks in terms of rate-of-gain and desirable-fleece characteristics, according to Waldron. The test lasts for 140 days and is traditionally followed by an educational field day and sale conducted in cooperation with the Texas AgriLife Extension Service. It is the oldest test of its type anywhere, having been conducted since 1948.

For more information on the Annual Ram Performance Test, pictures of the top indexing and selling animals, and a complete listing of test and sale results go to: http://safiles.tamu.edu/genetics/ramtest.htm or go to http://sanangelo.tamu.edu and click on the “performance tests” link.

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