Ten years after buying their first Boer goats, Blackall's Clay and Zac Armstrong have successfully negotiated their first foray into stud stock sales.
Combining with Terramac Boer Goats from Gympie, their Barcoo Boer Goat stud offered 72 registerable and commercial bucks for sale at the Blackall Showgrounds last week, averaging $880 a head for a joint clearance of 38.5 per cent.
According to vendor Clay Armstrong, a sale was negotiated for most of the unsold bucks after the auction was concluded.
Nat Curley and Aimie Licht, Avington Station, Blackall paid the sale-topping price of $1700 for the fifth goat in the catalogue, a triplet weighing 47kg.
In December 2020, the couple set a then-Australian record when they paid $11,070 for a full-blood Kalahari Red buck from Seaford Red Goats at Blackall.
They purchased 11 bucks from last week's Boer sale.
Among the few Boer goat studs in Australia using estimated breeding values, Mr Armstrong said they were planning to grow the presence they'd built at the inaugural sale to hold an annual event.
Bucks were sold to breeders from Tambo, Quilpie, Longreach and Isisford as well as the Blackall district.
Sixty-one of the 72 bucks for sale were from the Barcoo Boer stud and it finished with a 40pc clearance.
Mr Armstrong said that with just over 100 nannies with EBVs kidding every year, the time was right to conduct a sale.
"They're paddock raised so they don't look as impressive because of that, but the EBVs give buyers that guarantee, they can see how they'll perform," he said.
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When the Armstrong brothers began their operation nearly a decade ago, Fleur Tarlington, who operates Terramac Boer Goats near Gympie, was one of the people supplying them with seedstock and advice, and was invited to join last week's sale with bucks of her own.
"Clay suggested growing out some of our bucks at Blackall and putting them in the sale," she said.
"It's the first time we've participated in an auction - we've sold privately before - but we'd like to continue supplying bucks to western Queensland breeders.
"The action is in the west, I believe there's a lot of potential there.
"It's where goats do well and I'd like to be part of it."
Her sister Celia, and Geoff Burnell-Smith were the breeders who imported the first embryos to Australia from Zimbabwe and South Africa, via New Zealand in the early 1990s, establishing the Terraweena stud, one of Australia's founding Boer studs.
Both Terramac Boer Goats and Barcoo Boer Goats are members of Kidplan, using genetic statistics to make breeding choices.
Ms Tarlington said they aimed for carcase growth and mothering ability.
Of the 11 head offered at Blackall, four were sold at auction and another four afterwards, all for $800 a head.
The Armstrongs have expanded from their original 80ha block on Blackall's outskirts to add a 2800ha block, Salt Creek between Barcaldine and Blackall, where they are running 2500 Boer nannies and trialling different genetic lines.
"We've sold a few animal privately but most of our progeny goes to Charleville," Clay Armstrong said. "It's always been the plan, to work towards selling a stud animal."
Salt Creek is a mix of lighter soil with buffel grass and a good proportion of standing gidyea, and has recorded 500mm of rain so far this year.
"The goats don't seem to enjoy the rain but at the same time, this is the best they've ever looked," Mr Armstrong said.
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