“I love the Merino and have always farmed with them, as did my father, Deneys Biggs, and my grandfather, Frank Biggs who started the Vrede Wanganella Merino Stud in 1925.
“Merinos are such pleasing animals to work with - hardy and fertile - and you can’t beat their wool,” says William Biggs whose father started buying Wellwood rams in 1952. William has continued the tradition.
“I lamb in March as it is when we are most likely to get rain in our district, and therefore provide good food for lactating ewes” says Biggs who mates his maiden ewes at 18 months and lambs in the veld to keep his ewes hardy. Once the lambs have been marked, they move onto pastures with the ewes. They stay here for two month, at which stage the ewes are removed while the lambs remain on the pastures.
“We breed for fertility, hardiness, good mothering ability and quality wool and meat.”
In addition to Merinos, Biggs has 1300 Angora ewes and 50 Tuli-type breeding cows. In good seasons he also farms with hammels, kapaters and oxen.