CATTLE producers' willingness to invest in good-quality Droughtmaster seedstock, buoyed by the most positive seasonal outlook for many years, was in evidence at the ninth MAGS Droughtmaster Sale at Charters Towers last week.
Strong bidding and buyer budgets on average better than they have been for the past couple of years saw the highly regarded registered and herd bull offering of 121 lots sell to a top of $23,000 and average of $5145. A 98 per cent clearance was recorded.
The MAGS Sale is made up of a group of seven studs of the Atkinson family that feature genetics established by Drought-master breed founder Monty Atkinson.
Saletopper at $23,000 was Lamont Inmate, a strong sire character son of Vale View Magnum.
This 26-month-old prospect approaching 800kg in weight was purchased by Emerald studmaster Adam Geddes for his family's Oasis Stud.
Two lots earlier in the vendors select sire section, Mac and Gayle Shann, Cantaur Park, Clermont, bid to $21,000 for Durack Uranus, a two-year-old from the second sale crop of Wolfang Fact. A clean poll, he shows great natural muscling and was the heaviest two-tooth bull in the offering at 850kg.
Lot 1 of the sale, Glen Ruth El Paso, a rising two-year-old of 821kg and 131sq cm eye muscle area, was an $11,000 purchase for Max and Robyn Kelso, Coalbrook, Richmond.
The sum of $11,000 was also needed by Roger and Jenny Underwood, Eversleigh, Hughenden, to purchase Cashmere Kansas, an impressive two-year-old by the $41,000 sire Yaralla Farnham. Kansas has been on the show circuit this year and was a member of the winning breeders group at the Royal Brisbane Show.
Peter, Deleece and Luke Carrington, Rondel Droughtmasters, Winton, were at the sale and invested $11,000 in Mungalla Volt that, at 25 months, scaled a hefty 848kg.
Repeat sale buyers Harry and Sue Shann put together an eye- catching line of nine bulls, averaging $6445. Their top purchase at $10,000 was the proven sire Mungalla Token. This long, well-muscled bull topped a tonne in weight and scanned a massive 144sq cm EMA.
The Shanns also bid to $8000 for the sale's second highest price herd bull, an 858kg long and strong-muscled Droughtmaster/Charolais-cross bull.
Jim and Rhonda O'Connell of Camara Pastoral Co, Winton, were prevented from attending the event due to sale eve rain in their district; however, they bid by telephone to secure two young registered sires from Glen Ruth Stud. Their top purchase at $9500 was a rising two-year-old, long-bodied son of the Beef 2006 grand champion Droughtmaster bull, Glenlands D John Boy, while their other selection, also by John Boy, is bred out of one of Glen Ruth's leading stud matrons.
Ron and Mick Eckford, Phenros, Julia Creek, put together a most impressive line of four bulls headed by their $8000 purchase Durack Unite, a two-year-old poll with tremendous natural muscling.
Charles Underwood and family of Moura paid $8000 for Mungalla Vagabond, while repeat sale buyers KC Donohoe & Sons, Nevasa, Wandoan, bid to $7500 for Mungalla Venture, a son of $65,000 sire Hamadra Cody.
The sale's biggest buyer, Sid Godwin, Godwin Grazing Co, Springsure, purchased 13 bulls averaging $5040. Shopping in both the registered and herd bull sections, his top selection at $8000 was the milk-tooth son of Billabong Pharenheit, Glen Ruth Endeavour.
Clermont grazier Carmel Downs Pastoral Co selected three high-quality bulls of strong carcase attributes at an average of $5835. Early in the sale they paid $6000 for Valley Hank, a light-red sire prospect of attractive muscling. A 26-month-old, 764kg, milk-tooth bull from Lamont Stud topped the herd bull section at $9000, selling to the Donaldson family, Medway Grazing Co, Bogantungan.
Tim Kirkwood, Disney Station, Clermont, bid throughout the sale to put together a draft of 10 bulls at an average of $4000.
Other enterprises taking home attractive lines of bulls were repeat buyers Nardoo Cattle Co, Cloncurry (eight bulls), TS Dowling Trust, Richmond (six bulls) and SPK Pastoral Co, Mt Garnet (five bulls).
Selling agents Geaney's of Charters Towers and McCaffrey's Australian Livestock Marketing of Rockhampton and the group of sale vendors were delighted with the sale result and buyer turnout.
"We appreciate the effort our sale buyers made to get to the sale, considering wet weather in the days leading up to the event made some roads untrafficable," Rob Atkinson on behalf of the vendors said. "The spread of buyers from the Darling Downs to Winton and Cloncurry, Central Highlands, Atherton Tablelands and other central and northern districts was tremendous."
2011 will be the 10th anniversary of the MAGS Sale, and special celebrations and features are being planned for the event.
* Agents: Geaney's and McCaffrey's Australian Livestock Marketing.