TWO bulls at the Morganvale Poll Hereford sale made the top price of $10,500 at Keith this week.
The first one - Morganvale Nation - weighed 914 kilograms at 23.5 months of age.
It was sired by Mount Difficult Kearney K18 and out of Morganvale Cora K344.
It was bought by Landmark Keith livestock manager Noel Evans on behalf of Tasmanian buyer Webb Industries, Richmond.
The other $10,500 bull was Morganvale Non Stop, which weighed 994kg at 23 months.
It was also sired by Mount Difficult Kearney K18 and was out of Morganvale Blue Mist K346.
It was bought by Willalooka couple Phillip and Yvonna Walladge.
The Walladges have been buying from Morganvale for more than a decade.
Mr Walladge said Morganvale bulls were proven performers.
"I liked (Non Stop) because it had the conformation and shape I was looking for," he said.
The couple also bought a further two bulls at $4000 each.
Overall, 30 bulls sold out of 52 offered, for an average of $5250.
Seven May-June 2017-drop joined Poll Hereford heifers were also offered and sold for $1500 to McLachlan Pty Ltd, Mount Pleasant. The same buyer also bought a bull at $5000.
Stud principal Allan Morgan said although it had been a challenging year, he was very happy with how the bulls came up.
He was focused on producing easy-doing, low maintenance cattle with positive fats and high muscling.
Mr Morgan is feeling positive about the future for the industry.
"The cattle herd is in steep decline, which will be made worse after the floods in Qld and the dry in NSW, but I really think the cattle job is all up from here," he said.
"The calf numbers just aren't about because people have been off-loading. If we happen to get a good rain, female retention will be so high that cattle will be hard to procure.
"I think we're in a fortunate position (in the South East) but if we want to maximise our returns, investing in genetics is the best way to do it."
With both the top price bulls being sired by Mount Difficult Kearney K18, Mr Morgan said it was producing great results for the stud.
"Kearney is a trait leader for birth weight, calving ease, high intramuscular fat and good scrotal size, the aspects buyers are looking for," he said.
"We offered the first drop of its calves this year."
While clearance was back on last year, Mr Morgan was realistic about the result.
"We knew it was going to be a tough day without the pastoral clients operating this year," he said.
"I'm just pleased everyone could get the bulls they wanted."
The sale was conducted by Landmark and Elders, with Gordon Wood and Ross Milne auctioneering.
Mr Milne said Morganvale was producing sires that offered low birth weight, good growth and good carcase attributes, coupled with high eye muscle area and high marbling.
"It's a testament to the breeding program," he said.