Biara sale to $9500 peak

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Bob GarnantThe West Australian
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Green grazing paddocks paved the way to the Hasleby family's 10th annual on-property bull sale at Northampton, a sign of good things to come for the cattle industry.

Several pastoralists in attendance spoke of a good start to the growing season and shared the optimism that cattle prices have turned the corner.

By the end of the day, all 63 bulls offered were sold through Landmark to a top of $9500 and average price of $4037, a reflection of the confidence seen throughout the bull selling season.

The sale result was an increase of $749/head on last year's full clearance, when 67 bulls sold for an average price of $3288.

Biara co-principal John Hasleby said his family's commitment to the stud was stronger than ever, with his two sons, Glenn and Kasey, taking on further management roles as the stud moves to increase numbers with a larger content of poll genetics and continued concentration towards fertility.

It was the polled or scurred bulls (43 catalogued) that attracted the bidding competition among the 24 registered buyers.

One of Mr Hasleby's top picks, Biara 3161 (P), described as very docile with tremendous thickness and length, characteristic of its sire, Greenup Doo Hickey, was sold for the $9500 top-price.

Bremer Bay Santa Gertrudis cattle producers Peter and Tanya Buckenara selected the bull for its poll genetics, temperament and proven weight gain.

The 20-month-old 666kg bull recorded the second-highest daily weight gain (1.02kg/day) and had Group Breedplan figures of +9, +19, +23 for 200, 400 and 600-day weights.

Mr Buckenara said Doo Hickey genetics had worked very well in his family's 450 pure Santa Gertrudis herd, in which steers are sold to Harvey Beef.

The Buckenaras, who are repeat buyers, also bought two other Doo Hickey sired bulls for $6200 and $4000, and the trio will go over select groups of cows.

Other Doo Hickey sired bulls were in demand with two bulls selling each for the $8800 equal second top-price.

Repeat buyer John Leeds bought Biara 3074, while David Lindberg purchased Biara 3107 on behalf of first-time buyer Val Mouritz, Wandilla Farms, Hyden.

Mr Lindberg also secured a second $7000 bull for Wandilla, Biara 3078, sired by Rosevale Cobb & Co.

"Wandilla, which has been breeding Santa Gertrudis cattle since the late 1960s selected for temperament, thickness, sheath, and polled genetics," Mr Lindberg said.

Eneabba cattle producers Glen and Ashley Cooper, of Clayton Park Grazing, paid $6800 for polled bull Biara 3138, sired by Biara 8102.

With the introduction of Rosevale Crackerjack progeny in the sale (14 sons) repeat buyer Les Parsons, Coolawanyah Pastoral Co, Tom Price, paid $6200 for his share of outcross genetics (Biara 3153) while regular buyer Sally O'Brien, Gabyon Pastoral, Dongara, paid $6000 for a Crackerjack son.

Another Crackerjack bull, Biara 3132, sold to Ben Hall of Gundamain stud, Moora for $5000.

Mr Parsons also paid $5400 for the heaviest bull in the catalogue, Biara 3094, which at 22 months, weighed 820kg (1.17kg daily weight gain), the heaviest weight-for-age bull ever offered by Biara.

Several volume buyers were active at the sale including Minara Pastoral, Leonora (nine bulls), Mulga Downs station, Pilbara (eight bulls) Paroo station, Meekatharra (seven bulls), Granite Peak station, Wiluna (five bulls) and Pardoo Beef Co, Port Hedland (four bulls).

Landmark agent Kim Goad, who was bidding on behalf of Mulga Downs, said the station was increasing its Santa Gertrudis content.

Paroo station principal Jim Ford said he returned to the sale after several years absence to secure some quality genetics.

"We have had a brilliant start to the season with 300mm of rain since January," he said.

"There is plenty of confidence which should roll out well when we market 12 to 18 month steers in September/October to the live boat trade."

Pardoo Beef Corporation deputy livestock manager Gavin Tapscot quelled speculation on if the new Singapore-based owners of the Port Hedland/Broome station would buy local WA Santa Gertrudis bulls with his buying order of four Biara bulls.

Pardoo runs 6000 head of Santa Gertrudis cattle, including 4776 breeders and are looking to increase numbers.

Biara Santa Gertrudis bull sale *

·Offered * 63

·Sold *63

·Top price *$9500

·Average * $4037

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