Lamb sale in the rain at Tautane Station

Country-Wide Deputy Editor Rebecca Greaves reports on the first ever on-farm lamb sale at the iconic coastal Tautane Station at Herbertville.

In Livestock2 Minutes

It’s a bold move holding your first ever on-farm lamb sale in the current farming climate, but it was one that paid off this week for the Gunson family, who lease the iconic coastal Tautane Station at Herbertville.

Not even a downpour just as the sale kicked off could dampen enthusiasm, as the station’s terminal crop of 7000 lambs went up for sale on Tuesday. All lambs were sold, for an average of more than $80.

James Gunson and partner Hele Power manage the 3700-hectare sheep and beef breeding property for James’s family. The total lamb crop is about 23,000, James told me.

The station is owned by Ngati Kahungunu Iwi Incorporated.

Attracting buyers from the Manawatu, Wairarapa and Hawke’s Bay, some lambs are now destined for the South Island.

The rain set in just as the sale started

Gunson was happy with the results, given the current climate, saying it was a positive result especially given it had not been an easy spring and a lot of lambs are behind. “I thought the money was pretty good.”

The family hopes to make the lamb sale an annual event – one for the calendar. “We want to make an event of it, so people can come see the station and hopefully buy some lambs while they’re here.

“We’ve had a lot of feedback on our lambs and we wanted to give everyone a crack at them. In tough times, trying something different.”

Having visited Tautane Station several times in my career as an agricultural journalist, I can say, even if you’re not in the market for lambs, it’s truly a special place to visit, and well worth the drive.

Photos by Abbe Hoare, of Photos for Jean.