*38 of 38 bulls sold to $8500, av $5605
Mansfield stud Riga Angus held its first virtual bull sale on Wednesday, recording its best result to date with a 100 per cent clearance rate despite no buyers in person at the on-farm sale.
The stud offered 38 bulls at its fifth annual auction, setting a new top price and average of $8500 and $5605, respectively, to 22 buyers from the north-east, Western District, Gippsland, South Australia and NSW.
Finger Pastoral Company director Vera Finger, who owns Riga Angus, said between 20-30 people inspected the bulls over a five-day period leading up to the sale.
"I was very apprehensive because we had inspections and enquiries but we didn't have the physical presence before the sale to gauge how successful the it would be," Mrs Finger said.
"For many years we've sold privately but we have slowly transitioned to having an on-property sale but finding out fifth sale had to go online due to COVID-19 restrictions was quite an exercise."
The stud was well-supported by return clients which made for 60 per cent of the buying gallery while the remainder were first-time buyers.
"Some pockets in the north-east have varied in terms of seasonality," Ms Finger said.
"Some have been exceptional and others have been drier than average but our last two years we've had 450 mils of rainfall which is well below average, however, the start to autumn is the best start we've seen in a long time."
Bloodlines in the bulls offered included Pathfinder General K7, Clunnie Range Legend, Baldridge Beast Mode and Baldridge Common, the father of the top-priced bull.
The top bull Lot 30 was bought by return clients James and Theona Parton, Standon Rock stud, White Gate, for $8500.
The bull was in the top five per cent of its breed for 200, 400 and 600-day weight, the Angus breeding index and heavy grass index.
The bull also had positive calving ease and was in the top 20 per cent for scrotal, carcarse weight, the domestic breeding index and heavy grain index.
It was described by Riga Angus as a "thick soft skinned" bull with good docility.
Mr Parton said he bought the bull due to its conformation and breeding figures.
"I went and inspected him when they had an open day and that was the bull we wanted," Mr Parton said.
The bull will be joined to about 30 stud cows later this month.
Volume buyers included Independent Breeding and Marketing Service director Dick Whale who bought nine bulls on behalf of two South Australian clients, including the second top-priced bull for $8000.
Sam Maconochie, Hopkins River Pastoral Company, Dunkeld also purchased four bulls to be joined to heifers in September/October for spring calving.
Corcoran Parker agent Daniel Craddock, Mansfield, commended the Finger family for the presentation of their bulls.
"The online sale was something a month ago we weren't expecting to be in that position but the result speaks for itself," Mr Craddock said.
"The success clients have had with these bulls in the past means they are very happy to go back to Riga on a regular and that was proven again this year."
The sale was conducted on AuctionsPlus.
Have you signed up to Stock & Land's daily newsletter and breaking news emails? You can register below and make sure you are up to date with everything that's important to Victorian agriculture.