While high prices were unlikely to be as welcome for buyers as vendors the fact some drought affected graziers were present at the Rockhampton Brahman Week sale was enough to be thankful for.
A large number of bulls sold into western and north western parts of the state to those who were lucky enough to retain some or all of their breeder herd through persistent drought conditions.
George and Jenny Bambling, Glenavon, Aramac, bought four red Brahman bulls at the 2016 sale and Mrs Bambling said it was nice to be back at Gracemere.
“We haven’t been to Brahman Week for a couple of years now because its just been too dry to buy new bulls but as it turns out we should have gone last year and fed them for a few months- it would have been a cheaper option considering how strong the prices were this year,” she said.
“We just love going to Brahman Week, there is such a wide variety of good quality bulls and the social atmosphere is also beneficial, it’s like a mini holiday.”
The Bamblings run a 1400 head Brahman breeder herd across two properties, Glenavon, Aramac, and Hazelmere on Lake Galilee. Brahman bulls are joined with Brahman cows on one property while Charolais bulls are used for crossbreeding on the other, with all progeny sold as weaners through the Blackall weaner sale.
Mrs Bambling said the family had managed to hold on to the majority of their herd with a successful drought proofing plan but others weren’t so lucky.
“We bought a desert block in forest spinifex country called Rangers Valley about five years ago just for drought times so we destocked Glenavon last year and shifted them across to there,” she said.
“We managed to save them and bring them home with calves so we came out of it really well but there are plenty of paddocks in the west with no breeders in them at all.
“It’s tough now for those people to make their way back in but many of those lucky enough to still have some cows like us are ready for new bulls and were in the stands at Brahman Week.”
The Bambling’s four bulls were bought for an average of $10,000. Volume buyers of note were Central Creek Pastoral, Emerald, who picked up 16 reds for $113,000 while Arafura Cattle Company, Majors Creek, bought 12 red sires for $97,500 averaging $8125.
Shifting into the southern parts of Central Queensland, Banana Station, Banana, purchased 15 sires totaling $151,500 while the Bennett family trust, Taroom, bought 15 red bulls for $108,500.