INTEREST from across the country has helped Remolea Poll Herefords reach a top of $26,000 and an average of $10,426 at its annual bull sale.
A big crowd of 25 registered bidders gathered at the O'Leary family's Clifton property, Remolea, while many more followed along online via AuctionsPlus, in a bid to get their hands on the 48 bulls on offer during Monday's sale.
In the breakdown, 47 of the 48 bulls offered were sold with Bernard and Joe Anderson taking home the top- selling bull Remolea Rochester R084 for a sale-high $26,000.
The 24-month-old Homozygous Polled son of Callaway WRL HS Megatron M004 and out of Remolea Dainty L103, was rated in the top 25 per cent of the breed for gestation length, and the top 30pc for calving ease direct, birth weight and 200-day weight.
The rising two-year-old, was the first Hereford bull purchased by the Anderson family, which runs a Braford operation at its properties Narrien, one hour west of Clermont and Alice River, north west of Jericho, in 40 years and the first its purchased from the Darling Downs-based stud.
"We are a Braford-based herd, we have used Angus bulls before, but we are just starting to get back into Herefords," buyer Bernard Anderson said.
"It has been a great season, especially considering we are focused on grass fattening for the EU and Pasturefed Cattle Assurance System markets.
"Based on that, we need early-maturing cattle because our grass-fed bullocks have to be gone before the end of May and we can't do anything more in the winter.
"My dad had Herefords, but it would probably be about 40 years since we last bought a Hereford bull."
Mr Anderson said the top-seller wouldn't be used until the operation's next breeding rotation, which is usually in December.
"We've got big paddocks, so all of our heifers have got to calve naturally and we need to use bulls with that low birth weight," he said.
"We really liked the fact he was clean coated and all of his figures indicated that he is suitable for heifers,.
"Our bulls will be on a four-month mating period and we have close to 500 heifers a year, so we really do need good heifer bulls."
The under bidder on the top seller was Quaindering Poll Hereford stud, Williams, Western Australia, which purchased the equal second-top selling bull Remolea Republic R101 for $18,000.
The 23-month-old son of Yavenvale Nockout N312 and out of Remolea Blush P040 was rated in the top 10pc of the breed for intramuscular fat, scrotal size, days to calving, carcase weight and 400-day weight.
"His eye structure and 400-day and 600-day weight figures were what really drew me to him," Quaindering Poll Hereford stud principal Heidi Cowcher said.
"My late husband was great friends with the O'Leary family and I have always wanted to come and have a look at the sale in person.
"He's the first bull we've purchased here and in Western Australia we are prone to have eye cancer issues, so I'm really confident this bull's eye structure will really help us overcome that issue."
The bull was one of three which sold for $18,000, with the first two being Remolea Rushmore R070, which was purchased by the Fletcher family Koreelch, NSW, and Remolea Radcliffe R007, which was bought by Montgomery Pastoral, Talwood.
The WA-based stud was among several interstate buyers, including Willowsfield Agriculture, Alumy Creek, NSW, which purchased three bulls at an average of $6333 and Cawkers Well Station, Broken Hill, NSW which bought two bulls at an average of $11,000.
Local volume buyers included WA and KE Freeman, Ballandean Station, Ballandean, six bulls at an average of $10,333, PJ and MJ Bird, Seugley, The Gums, five bulls at an average of $9800 and Sunwood Pastoral, Chinchilla, three bulls at an average of $6666.
Stud principal Hilary O'Leary said the sale, which boasted a higher top price and average than last year, was a terrific success.
"We're exceptionally pleased with how all of the bulls presented at the sale, especially considering how wet it has been this year," Mr O'Leary said.
"I think all of them have got terrific sire potential and I hope they will be exactly what our buyers, both new and returning, will be after."
The sale was conducted by Grant, Daniel, Long, Dalby with Mark Duthie auctioneering.
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