THE run of solid, consistent on-property stud sales continued in Victoria, with Merlewood Angus' stud sale seeing many clients coming back along with new clients.
The top-priced bull was Lot 32, Merlewood Up River R126, which sold for $17,000 to long-term Merlewood client Nicole White, Barinsdale.
Lot 32's estimated breeding values included +5.8 birth weight, +54 200-day weight, +107 400-day weight, +139 600-day weight, and an intramuscular fat of +1.5.
In the 2019 Merlewood sale, Ms White bought the top-priced bull, along with Jamie Quinlan, Elders, but did much better this year by securing not only the top-priced bull but two more stud sires - Lot 5, Merlewood Up River R24 for $10,000, and Lot24, Merlewood Command for $12,000.
Ms White said all her purchases were based on weight gains and she liked the shape of the three bulls she purchased.
"They had good muscle tone, with a good build and I think I'll put him over some older cows and I think he will produce some quality calves," she said.
She said she returned to the Merlewood sale because she loved the outstanding temperament of what was on offer.
"The bulls are extremely quiet and with me looking after most of the cattle work here, it's just peace of mind for me to know that I've got some quiet cattle," she said.
Ms White said she hoped to join the bull by around June.
Merlewood stud co-principal Anne Marie Barrow said she was ecstatic at the success of her sale, with sales being up from last year's sale.
She said the event hit "the sweet spot of where the market value was at the moment" for both clients and sellers.
"It's our sixth annual sale, so we're quite new kids on the block along with first-generation farmers here in Gippsland," she said.
"Every year since we started six years ago, we're just consistently getting better and better results, so we were over the moon."
Ms Barrow pointed to the continued emergence of new sales in and around her region like the recent Wattlewood Angus sale and encouraged more Angus studs to dive into on-property sales.
"As well as Wattlewood we've got Absolute Angus and many other studs here doing good things," she said.
"When we first came here with our dream and vision six years ago we thought there was no reason why Gippsland shouldn't be known as the breeding bull region.
"The more quality studs that we see established here in this part of the world, the more it makes it appealing for other people to come to the Gippsland region and buy quality animals."
Ms Barrow said there was a good even line and amazing consistency and conformity throughout the sale, with the bulls being very well finished, making them the "perfect bill for the grassfed market".
The sale saw a number of volume buyers as well, with Barry Svenson, Berry Creek, purchasing Lot 29, Merlewood Raindance R125, for $16,000 and Lot 44, Merlewood Cowboy Up R112, for $15,000.
Bill and Matt Belfrage, Belfrage Pastoral, also bought three bulls - Lot 3, Merlewood Up River, which sold for $11,000, Lot 7, Merlewood Up River R6, sold for $12,000, and Lot 20, Merlewood Up River R33, $13,000.
Long-term client John Montelone, Mount Angus, purchased Lot 6, Merlewood Up River R2, for $10,000 and Lot 8, Merlewood Command R12, for $13,000.
Ms Barrow also commended new interstate clients Tim Schuuring, King Island Beef, Tas, who purchased Lot 17, Merlewood Command R9, for $14,000, and Lot 35, Merlewood Command R105, for $14,000.
"We had 53 registered buyers and of that just over half of them were existing clients and the rest were new clients," Ms Barrow said.
"We also had 37 registered bidders online and 20 guest viewers, and through AuctionsPlus we sold four bulls to King Island which were pretty much sold on the videos and the recommendations that people had done.
"So that was really exciting to see people having the confidence in our program to purchase without even coming here."
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