Weekly spring bull sales wrap-up

Jon Condon, 08/10/2012


Buyers’ market for Nindi Ultrablacks


It was a tough day at the office for Nindooinbah’s Inaugural UltraBlack, Brangus and Angus bull sale on Friday when 76 bulls sold for a modest $3961 average.

While the sale fixture attracted an impressive representation of large pastoral company and significant private commercial cattle interests from across a broad expanse of Queensland, it has to be said that many kept their hands in their pockets when it came time to purchase.

There was a total of 48 buyers registered, of which 28 made a purchase.

There is no doubt there is significant momentum in interest in UltraBlack genetics, particularly heavily performance-recorded examples like those being generated by Nindooinbah through its extensive artificial breeding technologies.

UltraBlacks represent a stabilised composite combining three-eighth Brangus and elite Angus genetics, in a package designed to deliver elevated meat quality and fertility performance in a sire package that also carries an enhanced level of adaption for extensive northern conditions.

That said, it was always going to be a big ask to expect a brand-new breed sub-type to make a significant impact on the commercial and seedstock bull market in its first year, given the highly competitive spring herd bull marketplace currently offering thousands of herd replacements across eastern Australia.

Some came away from Friday’s sale convinced that it will take UltraBlacks two or three years to establish a true market presence as a terminal sire or other cattle breeding option. Early carcase data from some of the pioneer breeders like Georgina Pastoral Co which now has 550 UltraBlack bulls in operation on Lake Nash on the Barkly will provide further signals for commercial cattlemen to absorb.

Among the 76 bulls sold at Friday’s inaugural sale were 30 young UltraBlack bulls, mostly January or February 2011 calves, which averaged $4100 and sold to a top of $8000.

A further 19 Brangus bulls averaged $4552, and included the sale’s top individual price of $18,000, while 21 50/50 Brangus bulls struggled to average $3119. A small offering of six Angus bulls averaged $4333.

Bulls went far and wide, with greatest concentration on the Darling Downs, southeast Queensland, Maranoa and Northern NSW, with two solid orders for Elders clients in the Katherine and Alice Springs districts.

Top price of $18,000 was paid for the September 2010 three-eighths content all import bloodline Brangus calf, Nindooinbah F670, an ET son of US donor, Singlerary of Brinks 675R out of MS Brinks AL 187L. He went to Milwallah Angus Stud, Young, NSW.

Highest price among the UltraBlacks was $8000 paid for Nindooinbah F495, and ET son of Singlerary of Brinks (US) out of Lawsons blood donor cow, Lawsons Highmark A547. He went to Melrose Station, Killarney, which earlier this year put together a nice line of UltraBlack heifers at Nindooinbah’s first female sale.

Strongest volume support came from an Elders Katherine client, taking 19 bulls for a $3105 average, and the Oldfield family’s G&C Pastoral Co, Alice Springs, taking 11 bulls averaging $3863.

Best of the Queensland buyers included Allied Beef Cattle Co which bought seven bulls for Dirranbandi clients, averaging $3285; J Harris from Corfield, who bought  six averaging $4916; and the Hill family’s Tooloombilla Partnership, Mitchell, five averaging $3800.

One of the real innovations seen in the sale catalogue was a handy ‘ready-reckoner’ for Breedplan figures, called the Nindi Ezi-Guide for Bull Traits. It provided a simply five-point scale for each sale bull based on calving ease, growth, carcase yield, marbling and tropical adaptation.

Another of the remarkable attributes about the sale was the sheer depth of artificial breeding evident, with 71 of the 76 bulls sold being embryo transfer calves. This quite possibly is a record for any substantial bull sale ever conducted in Australia, and stands as a testament to Nindooinbah’s unique capacity to efficiently produce vast numbers of embryo calves carrying elite-performance genetics.


Brahman Week produces strong $6420 average 

One of the world's largest annual bull sales, the three-day Brahman Week fiixture in Rockhampton, defied the live export market downturn to post an extremely strong $6420 average for 756 bulls last week – a full $900 up on averages seen a year earlier.

The sale produced a gross of $4.85 million, and a strong clearance rate of 91.5 percent for bulls sold across Central and Northern Australia.

The Red Brahman portion of the sale catalogue saw 346 bulls sold for a $6584 average, with 410 Greys average $6281.

Top price of $60,000 was paid for Grey Fenech Cattle Co bull, while the $50,000 top red price was paid by Nick Dudarko, Kangarin Brahmans for a bull offered by Tom Nobbs, Yoman T Stud, Bauhinia.

Natural polls in both Reds and Greys again proved attractive to buyers, but not at the expense of structural and breeding traits. A significant number of clean-polled cattle offered were catalogued with polled gene test results included.


Carcase sire tops at $32,000 at Karoo

Karoo principal Annie Scott with auctioneer Charlie Maher, Ben Emms, Ray White Emms Mooney, and buyers Mark and Sam Evans, Walgett.Southern NSW buyers provided strong support at the recent Karoo Angus sale last month, paying to a top of $32,000, which eclipsed the previous study record of $26,000.

Held on-property at Bathurst, the sale recorded a complete clearance of 68 bulls for an average price of $8338.

Repeat clients Bruce Graham, Crawford Angus, Tumut, bid over the phone to secure yearling carcase stud sire, Karoo D145 Regent G57. The March 2011 drop calf was one of the first sons of Tuwharetoa Regent D145 to be offered, weighed 690kg and had a 40sq cm scrotal circumference.

On Breedplan, the bull has a 600 day growth of +124kg, eye muscle area of +6.0sq cm, and IMF (marbling) of +2.4.

The sale got off to a cracking start with Wagga Wagga shorthorn stud breeder Gerald Spry paying $16,000 for a Te Mania Infinity son, Karoo 04379 Infinity F67. Karoo principal Annie Scott said the bull was selected by the Sprys to join to Shorthorn cows and Angus heifers.

Among the repeat commercial buyers were Mark and Sam Evans, Walgett, taking home four bulls to a top of $15,000. The Evans family has used Karoo bloodlines in their 500 cow Angus herd for the past 15 years.

Riverina buyers showed their interest in the cold country bred bulls, with commercial producer Betty Roche, Adelong, paying to a top of $13,000, and Ian Seidel, Narrandera, taking home two bulls for $8000 and $6000. Other major buyers included with four bulls each, Waverley Station, Scone, Chris Stonestreet, Blayney and Camalleri Investments, Barry, with three bulls to $7000.

Bulls sold from Queensland to southern NSW.




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