Visiting Byarlea Wiltshire Horn Sheep Stud
2019 started with a bang for us as we headed off on a road trip to Byarlea Wiltshire Horn Sheep Stud. Managed by Brian and Jill Wilson, and considered to be the largest Wiltshire Horn stud in the world, Byarlea is located at Clements Gap, South West of Crystal Brook at the start of the southern end of the Flinders Ranges.
Established in the mid 1990's, Byarlea has a flock of over three thousand breeding ewes producing both stud and commercial Wiltshire Horns. Our trip proved a great opportunity to see first hand the operations of this stud. With the hope of finding a new stud ram, we were spoilt for choice which made the decision challenging. A couple of ewes also caught our eye and made the long (and hot) trip home with us to Congupna, Victoria.
The Wilson's also run a number of other enterprises including Byarlea Poll Wiltshire Stud and the cutting edge manufacturing of Wilson Pastoral Saltbush Pellets. We were fortunate enough to be given an insight into both of these arms of their business during our visit.
The Poll Wiltshire was developed from a natural occurrence in the Byarlea Wiltshire Horn Stud sheep flock. These sheep are a prime lamb breed and have excellent wool shedding characteristics due to having no back crossing. They have the same characteristics as the Wiltshire Horn, without the horns. Extensive genetic testing through Pfizer Animal Genetics has been completed to confirm that this line was 100% pure Wiltshire.
To learn more about Brian and Jill’s enterprises including their Wiltshire Horn stud, Polled Wiltshire stud and Saltbush Pellets, check out the links below:
Wiltshire Horn Sheep: http://www.wiltshirehornsheepstud.com
Polled Wiltshire: http://www.pollwiltshire.com.au/
Wilson Pastoral Saltbush Pellets: https://saltbushpellets.com.au/
With eight wind turbines gracing the Wilson's property, it was fascinating to see how the sheep gravitated towards the shade provided by these tremendous structures.
The manufacturing of Saltbush pellets is a relative new avenue the Wilson's are exploring. Harvesting the Saltbush plant and combining it with high energy grains such as barley and necessary fibre for roughage to make a pellet, is proving a winner across the country. We were sent home with some bags to trial and our sheep have taken no time at all to favour these over other feed options. We highly recommend them!
Thanks Brian and Jill for giving us such a wonderful experience visiting your farm.