Boosting average wool weight by one-third in just one season was not what Dacre and Lois Weston expected from feeding Manildra Stockfeed’s DDG-S pellet to their merino at Shalom in Bookham, NSW.
With the pellets widely known as an excellent source of protein and energy for supplementary feeding, the phenomenal results went far beyond intended in simply keeping condition of their herd.
“During shearing in June, the wool averaged eight kilograms, whereas the average is normally six kilograms,” Mr Weston said.
The couple put this impressive increase down to the DDG-S pellets, which they started feeding sheep with lambs on foot in December. The lambs when weaned went straight back onto the pellets. And in a dry season, the pellets became a reliably palatable source of rumen-degradable protein with high levels of metabolisable energy.
“About 90 per cent of the lambs took to the pellets, and they have been on them ever since,” said Mr Weston. “The protein in the pellets really lifted the sheep.”
As well as the increase in average wool weight, the Westons’ merino sheep 19-micron staple length increased from 105mm to 107mm.
Manildra Stockfeed Manager Andrew Lloyd described the results as testament to the DDG-S pellet’s promotion of better rumen health, alongside weight gain.
“We are thrilled by the testimonial from Dacre and Lois – while this wasn’t something we expected, it’s something we are certainly looking to gather more data on,” Mr Lloyd said.
Pellets Worth their Weight in Wool