We caught up with the breeder of the Reserve Grand Champion Registered Ewe at the 2022 Arizona National. We invite you to read our candid interview with Sonrise Acres below and please continue to check back often for our next edition of “Breeder Spotlight.”
Tell us about the breeding/genetics/pedigree of your state fair champion.
War Admiral x Protest This
If you could add anything to your operation, what would it be?
An elite sire! We are a small family operation raising Southdowns since 2014. We have focused on retention of superior females and producing lambs that are structurally sound, wild muscled and have show ring presence. Our goal is to produce complete Southdowns that are competitive in both market and breeding shows. That one unique sire can change a program.
Over the last several years the use of Fresh and Frozen Semen AI, as well as flushing has evolved. How does your flock utilize AI/Flushing and if so, how has it affected your flock?
We have utilized AI in a select number of females over the past several years. In 2022, we had the opportunity to use one of the top wether producing sires in the country from Aaron Jennings and opted for live coverage on the majority of our females. Flushing the female that won AZ this year and her mother are much anticipated matings.
Do you have a job besides raising sheep, if so what?
I practice as a Physician Assistant in the Emergency Department at our local hospital. My wife is a Pharmacist for Rood & Riddle Veterinary Pharmacy, one of the premier equine hospitals in the world. Needless to say, health of our flock is a priority!
Do you have a set time you like to have chores done by?
I work nights, so barn chores happen around my schedule. Our success would not be possible without the help and dedication of my kids, family and show crew!
Do you have a routine while choring, if so what is it?
My crew and Country music. You can’t be in the barn without fun people and good tunes!
What do you think has impacted the sheep industry the most within the past 10 years?
The passion, drive and work ethic of showman and breeders in this industry is phenomenal. The tools available from reproduction to nutrition to be able to help the animal perform at the highest level I believe sets our industry apart from others. These tools have allowed both small and large scale producers the ability to produce elite stock
You have a week to go anywhere in the world, where would you go?
I have always wanted to go to Hawaii Love the beach and sun.