A DROUGHMASTER bull has topped this year's annual Pastoralists and Graziers Association (PGA) Kimberley Division bos Indicus bull sale reaching $5250.
The bull was offered by Barlyne Pastoral Trust, Gayndah, Queensland and bought by Keith Anderson, Jubilee Downs station, Fitzroy Crossing.
The sale saw grey and red Brahman, Droughtmaster, Charbray and Queenslander bulls offered with all lots trucked in from 16 Queensland studs.
In what was a good sale for most breeds it was the usually popular grey Brahmans which met with limited competition with many pastoralists and industry representatives believing it was largely due to the uncertainty in Indonesia as a result of the live cattle export ban.
Of the 154 bulls on offer at the sale, 135 sold under the hammer with a further 13 selling immediately after the sale.
The sale grossed $359,750 and averaged $2665.
Last year's sale saw 149 bulls sold from 161 offered for a gross of $455,000 and an average of $3054.
Westcoast Livestock auctioneer Neil Foale said it was a good result considering the issues with live export over the last few months.
"The sale was a bit disappointing in places," Mr Foale said.
"But I can tell you the quality of the cattle which were offered was the best I have seen since the sale was re-established five years ago."
Mr Foale said in most places, the sale was strong but they had trouble selling the grey Brahmans due to a variety of issues, but mainly the live cattle export ban.
Mr Foale said if pastoralists bought grey Brahman bulls and the Indonesian market was suspended again there was nowhere for them to go except down south.
Mr Foale said the rest of the offering sold well.
Mr Anderson, who runs 12,000 cattle, said the Droughtmaster breed was well suited to his operation.
"They are my type of breed," Mr Anderson said.
"The Droughmasters have the higher bos Indicus content and they are honey coloured.
"They are the type of cattle I like."
Mr Anderson also bought the three top-priced Queenslander bulls for $4750 each, also from Barlyne and said they were quality bulls.
"The Queenslanders are also a high content bull," he said.
"The ones I go for are that honey colour and they always seem to do well."
He said the sale was solid but it was disappointing to not see interest in the grey Brahmans.
"It was a bit sad today's sale," he said.
"It started off pretty slow with the grey Brahmans and I think that's a reflection of the way things are at the moment.
"People are worried and they don't really know where they stand with the Indonesian market."
Wellard Group bought the remaining Queenslander bulls offered by the Muan stud and paid $2750 for both.
Droughtmasters proved popular on the day with all 32 bulls sold under the hammer.
In addition to the top-priced bull, Jubilee Downs bought another two bulls.
Wellard Group was the biggest buyer of Droughtmasters taking home nine to a top of $4500 for a bull offered by RM & LA Sperling, Rodlyn stud, Bell, Queensland.
This 23-month-old bull was sired by Wolfgang 26001 and out of Rodlyn Miss 04/37.
Another volume buyer in this section was Camp Cattle Company, Kalyeeda station, Fitzroy Crossing, who bought seven Droughties.
It paid to a top of $3000 for one bull offered by Comanche Grazing Co.
Merv Wortley, Ruby Plains station, who runs 23,000 head of cattle, was also a major buyer at the sale buying the top-priced Charbray for $4250 from Rodlyn stud.
"I liked the Charbray because he was a proper polled bull and we use them to crossbreed with our Brahmans," Mr Wortley said.
"This bull had everything we were looking for. He is smooth coated and had good muscle in him."
The bull was sired by Gunnadoo and out of Rodlyn Miss 73/99.
The Sperlings also sold the equal second top-priced bull for $4000 to Wade Sambell, Warrambie station, Roeburne. Mr Sambell also paid $4000 for a Charbray from TMG Brahmans.
Ruby Plains station was also the biggest buyer in the grey Brahman section of the catalogue, buying 17 in total to a top of $3000. This bull was offered by Bunda Livestock.
Mr Wortley said he bought a number of grey Brahmans because he believed they were good quality cattle.
"Everybody's decisions are different on what they like and they looked to be some good quality cattle," he said.
Also buying in the grey Brahman section was Mt Edgar station who took home 13 to a top of $2750, while Larrawa station, Fitzroy Crossing, bought 11 to a top of $3000.
Top price in the grey Brahman catalogue was $3500 paid for three bulls by Anna Plains station, Broome (2) and Warrambie station bought the other.
Haydn Sale, Yougawalla station, was also a major buyer paying $3250 for the equal top-priced Red Brahman. This was also offered by Barlyne Pastoral Trust.
The bull was 21-months-old and was sired by Muan Gladiator and out of Barlyne Diane 350.
In addition to the top-priced red Brahman, Yougawalla bought another eight bulls.
The other red Brahman to sell for $3250 was offered by Rodlyn and bought by Ruby Plains station.
This bull was sired by Fairy Springs Dawson and out of Rodlyn Miss 2/99.
Meda station was the biggest buyer of red Brahmans taking home 17 in total paying to a top of $3000 for four bulls.
Blina station was another active buyer of red Brahmans buying nine bulls all up to a top of $3000 for a bull from Muan Pastoral.
PGA president Rob Gillam said he was pleased with how the sale went and the demand in the market.
"Prices were a little bit lower than what they were last year but under the circumstances with the live export issues at the moment that can be expected," Mr Gillam said.
"It was a very bold move by the breeders to actually bring the bulls over to WA under the circumstances but at the same time I think their faith was repaid by the Kimberley purchasers.
"Although the average price was down a bit, they did support the sale well."