Beltex sheep breeders in New Zealand have been making their mark down under with two lamb records – the result of embryos from Andrew Baillie's Callacrag flock – achieved at the Gallagher family's on-farm sale at Rangiatea in Mid Canterbury, earlier this month.

New and returning buyers saw a new record of NZ$22,000 paid for a ram lamb which was knocked down Sterl Roadley, from Mautgaturoto, Northland, who later went to NZ$6800 for another.

Mr Roadley who forked out NZ$5200 last year for a Beltex here last year has been most impressed with the breed due to its easy lambing and meat to bone ratio.

Following close behind on NZ$21,000 was another similarly aged tup lamb which this time sold to the Robinson family at Wyndham, Southland. These two sales not only set new records within the Beltex breed but were also the highest prices paid for ram lambs sold in New Zealand for at least 20 years.

Both lambs were the result of embryos from Lanarkshire breeder, Andrew Baillie who exported more than 100 embryos and 200 straws of semen from the Callacrag flock last year.

From a catalogued entry of 22 pure-bred tup lambs, the section averaged approximately NZ$8500 with the various cross-bred ram lambs seeing Beltex cross Suffolks level at NZ$2050.

The event included the first New Zealand sale of Beltex cross two-tooth ewes and ewe lambs. Beltex New Zealand reported stock is now travelling throughout the country from Northland to Bluff in the south.