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Bull Sale 2016

Millah Murrah sets new standard

(courtesy The Land | Thursday, September 8, 2016, page 3)

A new benchmark was set for on-property bull sales at last week’s Millah Murrah Angus sale, held by the Thompson family of Bathurst. Their sale venue at “Goonamurrah” was packed as the 109 bulls offered were sold to a full clearance, topping at $85,000 to average $16,348 – a new all breeds national on-property record. Millah Murrah not only eclipsed its 2015 average of $14,876, then a new national record for the Angus breed, but it overtook the previous national all breeds record average of $15,470, set by PBF Brahmans at Sarina, Queensland, for 33 bulls the stud sold in 2005.

Millah Murrah’s result even compares well – given the number of bulls cleared – to the glitzy NCC Brahman special event sale held during the 18th World Brahman Congress in May this year where 23 female and genetic lots averaged $19,090.

At $85,000, Millah Murrah Loch Up L133, by US sire Thomas Up River, sold to Jim Wedge and Jackie Chard, Ascot Angus stud, Warwick, Queensland.


The Land

Loch Up lands $85,000 top in monster Millah Murrah sale

(courtesy The Land | Thursday, September 8, 2016, pages 48-49)

The cattle market is on a high, but it was demand for quality that pushed this year’s Millah Murrah Angus bull sale at Bathurst to another record, setting a new all breeds national average price of $16,348.

This was helped by a top price of $85,000 and comes on the back of last year’s whopper auction, which included a $150,000 top and the then Angus breed record average of $14,876.

This year’s sale topper was 17 month-old Millah Murrah Loch Up L133, a 788 kilogram son of US sire Thomas Up River 1614 from Millah Murrah Brenda H49.  Loch Up L133 was brought forward from lot 13 to be the opening lot due to strong interest.

The curtain-raiser paved the way for a stellar run of high prices, including a second top of $54,000 and a total of 21 bulls selling for $20,000 or more.

Loch Up L133 sold to return buyers Jim Wedge and Jackie Chard, Ascot Angus, Warwick, Queensland, in partnership with ABS Australia, represented by Bill Cornell. The bull was offered with a guarantee, having sustained an injury prior to sale, but this didn’t stop bidders keen to snap up the outstanding youngster.

Mr Wedge said Loch Up was of the type that was the focus of the Ascot operation.

“Our overriding aim if to deliver low risk, thick, polled bulls, bred with an MSA (Meat Standards Australia) targeted approach,” Mr Wedge said.

“L133 was just too good to let go past.  A bull that covers every base like he does, comes along once or twice a decade.”

“We bought into (the $150,000 Millah Murrah) Kingdom last year and now we have sole walking rights to this fellow. It’s a pretty exciting investment for us.”

Loch Up had estimated (the breeding values (EBVs) well above the breed average, including +56, +107 and +133, for 200-, 400- and 600-day weight, and a whopping 44 centimetre scrotal circumference.

“Loch Up has got an attractive pedigree… comes with a high quality maternal background and has a brilliant, balanced EBV set.  This bull has widespread appeal.. he’s a rare combination that represents a broad spectrum joining option for the industry,” Mr Cornell said.

The second-top seller was Millah Murrah Lakeside L69, which sold to Robert Gill who runs Kamilaroi Angus at Merriwa.  Mr Gill has been buying Millah Murrah bulls since 2008 and was determined to buy the son of Thomas Up River 1614 from the renowned Prue line, Lakeside’s dam being Millah Murrah Prue H113, a prominent donor by the influential Lawsons Henry V111.

Mr Gill’s Angus herd runs alongside his fully integrated, meat supply chain business, which processes upwards of 15,000 beef bodies annually for distribution under his Alexander Downs brand.

Throughout the sale, sons of Ascot Hallmark H147, Thomas Up River 1614, Matauri Reality and EF Complement 8088 appeared to dominate the higher prices.  Overall, 30 two-year-old bulls sold to $22,000 to average $15,600, 57 18-month-old bulls topped at $85,000 to average $17,947 and 22 yearlings topped at $22,000 to average $13,227.

Two bulls made $28,000, including Millah Murrah Laker L24 to Heart Angus stud, Tamworth, while Millah Murrah Complement L119 sold for similar money to Hugh Kraefft’s Tivoli Angus stud at Merriwa.

Seven bulls made $22,000. These included Millah Murrah Complement L238 to Monterey Angus, Karridale, Western Australia:  Millah Murrah Hallmark L17 to Michael Wallace, Springhills Estate, Boyup Brook, WA, and Millah Murrah Hallmark L94, to Dough and Barbara Tozer, Onslow Pastoral Company, Wallendbeen.

Jeremy Shaw, JS Grazing, Injune, Qld, bought five bulls.  “We knew they would be in hot demand and were prepared to go all the way to get what we were after,” Mr Shaw said.  This included Millah Murrah Reality L28 for $20,000, plus Millah Murrah Hallmark L21, Millah Murrah Complement K240 and Millah Murrah Complement K244 all for $22,000 each, and Millah Murrah Tex K252 for $18,000.

Mr Shaw, with his wife Julie and in partnership with his parents Jeff and Jenny, runs 1400 Angus breeders and sells the offspring through the Roma saleyards. This year’s draft of 750 eight – to 10-month-old weaners averaged $1135.

Also securing five bulls were return clients, Stephen and Robyn White from Roma, while long term Millah Murrah bull buyers, Cavan Station, Yass, represented by Matt Crozier, bid to $22,000 to secure four.  Returning buyers the Crossing family, “Angullong”, Orange, bought four, as did first-time buyer Barrington Park Pastoral, Spring Ridge.

Bulls sold to all mainland states, with 75 per cent going to return clients. Twenty eight sons of US sire EF complement averaged $16,571, topped at $20,000, three times to average $15,200 and 10 sons of Ascot Hallmark topped at $22,000 to average $19,000.  Six sons of Hingaia 469 sold to $20,000 to average $17,000, while the five sons of Thomas Up River averaged $39,000.

Millah Murrah principal Ross Thompson described the sale as having been a perfect storm of a great draft of bulls offered when the beef industry was “on fire”.

“We need more bulls, and we aim to have a significantly larger number next year and the following year. We will be calving 450 cows,” he said.

The sale was conducted by Elders Bathurst, with guest auctioneer Paul Dooley, who said it was the highest grossing sale he had ever conducted.