Owned and managed by second and third generation farmers, Kate and Chris Dorahy and family, Cloven Hills is dedicated to helping farmers develop simple, sustainable and profitable farms for future generations.
Built on strong foundations, Cloven Hills has specialised in maternal genetics since 1977. The property’s founder, John Porter (Kate’s father), was one of the first Coopworth breeders to source New Zealand rams in 1978.
Kate and Chris have both enjoyed successful careers in agribusiness, environmental policy and agricultural research, and while farming would be an opportunity they would realise, as Kate’s aunt always says, “there’s sheep in the blood”.
Sheep farming has been in Kate’s family for generations, dating back to her great-great-grandfather, Thomas Porter, who bred Dorset in Dorset England. Thomas left England in 1850s as young man and, with a partner, started Merino Stud, Koonoona, near Burra – the first merino stud in South Australia’s mid north. Kate’s ancestors also farmed in other areas of Australia, including north west WA in the 1860s. Additionally, Chris’ family have farmed in NSW since early 1900s.
Kate and Chris purchased Cloven Hills 10 years ago, growing the existing 1200 acres to almost 2000 acres. They recently purchased Rangeview farm with partners and are developing this ex-blue gum property into a commercial prime lamb enterprise.
Cloven Hills runs single sire records over 1500 stud ewes every year, however 3000 out of the 4000 ewes on Cloven Hills are performance-recorded with full pedigree.
Through years of research and experience, this husband and wife team have developed a precise and effective sheep breeding strategy, which today produces the industry’s best livestock – and is the most successful stand-alone stud on the Australian maternal sires database.
Living and working on the farm with their three children, Kate and Chris are passionate about supporting Aussie farmers and the local community.
As commercial and stud breeders, they understand the challenges that regularly arise on a farm. It’s why their breeding programs are specifically tailored to helping farmers better manage their livestock and grow their business in today’s market.
Together, Kate and Chris bring a wealth of experience in science and agriculture, which is evident in every aspect of their breeding programs. Combining the latest technology with thorough data collection and analysis, the pair are very specific in their selection process. This high level of detail has seen genetic gains and physical improvements across the flock year on year, resulting in hardy livestock with a balance of premium maternal traits.
Over the past 15 years, the Dorahys have transitioned Cloven Hills to a composite maternal flock comprised of the ultimate characteristics for greater prime lamb production.
The pair continue to build on the quality of Cloven Hills livestock by refining the breeding strategies and investing in programs that introduce the top Australian and New Zealand lamb genetics to their stud and commercial flocks. This ensures they are able to consistently supply farmers with the highest quality produce, as well as provide them with valuable information and guidance every step of the way.
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