About

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Gracemere Merinos is owned and operated by Rick & Jenny Robertson.007

Rick is a very keen stud merino breeder and strives to breed well structured, fertile sheep with 19m deep crimping wool that performs well in challenging environments.

Rick says "I strongly believe the merino is still the most profitable breed of sheep, because it has multiple income sources. These include the fleece, trade wether lambs and trade crossbreed lambs, plus surplus sheep sales."

Jenny's role is with the financial management of the business and believes it is important to use a farming system that is regenerative - balancing livestock requirements with the grazing system whilst keeping a very close eye on finances and most importantly; the people!

 

 

Rick and Jenny have been practising a wholistic system since the beginning of 2009. They changed from a high input system, because it was not producing the results they were expecting. This was particularly in years of poor rainfall and so to break the cycle of endless feeding out and not knowing when that would end, they decided to embrace a change!  Whilst that change has been challenging, it also has provided new opportunities whilst making them feel in control of their business. 

They now rotationally graze the stock in large mobs through over 75 paddocks for short periods of time, giving the grass plenty of time to recover and grow before the next grazing. By using grazing charts that match stocking rates to rainfall and budgeting out 3 months ahead, it allows for much more responsive management. The only time they do not rotationally graze is whilst lambing down the ewes. 

This system has greatly benefited the performance of their stock by providing an even plane of nutrition all year round. Their animal health costs have reduced by 50% since implementing the carefully managed rotational grazing system, a major benefit being sheep being regularly moved onto clean paddocks and thereby reducing their worm burdens.

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Gracemere 4.19 was a sire that was used extensively during the 2000's that has had a positive impact on their breeding program. They used him particularly for his impressive body and bulky fleece.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gracemere Merino rams are available for sale each year by private arrangement and Rick is happy to provide a year round consultancy service to clients.