Hendersons acquire Baderloo

New owners of Baderloo Poll Merino stud, David and Alison Henderson, pictured with their purchase of the stud’s top priced ram in 2021 with Demelza and Daniel Hammat and selling agent David Whittenbury, Quality Livestock. Photo: Supplied
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One of South Australia’s premier poll merino studs at Spalding is heading just a little north of its home, to one of the State’s emerging sheep producers at Caltowie in the Mid North region.

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The Henderson family at Caltowie, who also began their own Hendowie Poll Merino stud three years ago, excitedly announced their acquisition of the Baderloo Poll Merino stud at the weekend.

Facilitated by Quality Wool and Livestock, the sale comprised about 800 mixed age stud ewes and 380 blue tag stud ewe lambs.

Baderloo has been operated by the Hammat family, more recently Daniel and his wife Demelza and previously by Daniel’s late father, Phil, and his mother, Ann, at Spalding since the turn of the century and with a strong commitment to soft rolling skin (SRS) Merino breeding principles.

Long-term genetic tracking and measurement has enabled the Hammats to produce highly fertile, fast growing, plain-bodied and naturally resilient sheep that have been trait leaders for growth rates, clean fleece weight, eye muscle depth, fat, staple length and weaning rate.

The Baderloo lambing rate routinely hits 130 per cent and the wrinkle-free flock has not been mulesed since 2004, with aims to increase resistance to both breach and body strike.

The Baderloo SRS type and focus on staple length has allowed a transition to shearing twice annually. They have been producing 3.5 kilograms of deeply crimped, 20.5-micron wool at 65 to 70-millimetre staple length on average twice a year, driving productivity per head.

The acquisition of the stud, which importantly helped establish Hendowie Poll Merinos, is set to dramatically upscale and intensify the Henderson’s sheep business.

Stud principal and fifth generation producer Alison Henderson, who will operate the studs predominantly with her father, David, said Baderloo was renowned for its strong, quality genetics and supporting data, and the purchase would quickly enhance their enterprise considerably.

“We have been buying the genetics for the past 14 years, so we know the genetics and it will be a great fit for our property, our own genetics and our focus to breed the most productive, dual purpose animal,” said Alison, who is anticipating busy months ahead including upcoming sales for the studs, and, as a result, will be ceasing her contract pregnancy scanning work in the region.

She said the family recognised they were effectively buying 25 years of hard work in the successful development of the stud and it would replace some of their commercial flock to enhance the profitability of their sheep enterprise.

“The Hammats have established a quality line of genetics that are performing around the country, including interstate and with semen sales overseas, and we will look to continue to strengthen the quality of the program.”

In addition to using Baderloo sires, the Hendowie stud also has used genetics from Leahcim and Kiandra studs in SA, as well as from Mumblebone in New South Wales.

Last year, it also bought the top priced sire at Superior Wool Merinos’ stud sale at Tintinara, a bold crimping, 18.2-micron son of a $20,000 Superior Wool Syndicate ram with ASBVs in the top 20 per cent for both yearling weight an weaning weight.

Hendowie has shown a strong focus on ASBVs and wool production without losing structure and has significantly increased carcase quality, particularly eye muscle and fat.

Quality Wool General Manager Greg Pearce said the Baderloo purchase was a great fit for the Henderson’s farming scale aspirations and an excellent vote of confidence for the industry and development of Merino genetics.

“The Baderloo style of sheep is sought-after in the industry and it will continue to be,” Greg said.

“The sale is a great investment for the Hendersons and a great result for the Hammats.”

Quality Wool and Livestock’s strong relationships with both families assisted the successful sale and was recognised by Alison.

“One thing we really value about Quality is the way they work with people, and put people first, and that’s the reason we work with them. They are really good at all levels.”

Daniel Hammat said after taking over the Baderloo stud from his parents and committing to its development over the past 10 years, handing over the reins was difficult, but he said the sale was part of the evolution of the farming business with his wife, Demelza, and would assist their increased cropping scale.

Daniel and Demelza, together with Alison, will be working closely together to offer another 160 rams at the Baderloo on-property sale on August 14, while Alison also expects to offer another 40 Hendowie rams at the Jamestown Showgrounds on August 28.

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