After thinking all day, that is all I can say about the start of the 2011 bull sale season.
It’s still early in the year, but without exception every bull sale that I have been to has had larger crowds than past years, and they haven’t been coming for the free lunch. They are there to buy, and they’re willing to pay for quality, calving ease and performance.
Bulls are averaging from $500 to $1,000 more than last year, and don’t seem to be cheapening up any as we get further into to sale season. It is completely understandable, considering the cattle market could hold this spring and into the summer, and at fall calf sales a live weaned calf could bring in the neighborhood of $750 to $800 or more per head. That is a nice neighborhood I think we’d all like to live in.
The commercial female market is just as wild. I don’t know if you’ve tried to buy bred cows this winter, but I know at least some of you are, because I am, and most times when I call on a group of cows they’re already sold. The guy on the other end of the phone always talks like he was paid exactly what he asked for his cows, too. An auctioneer friend put it like this: “When I’m selling bred cows I don’t even think they’re listening to what I’m asking for, they just want them, so they bid.” He was kidding, but optimism is definitely in the air and economists predict these price levels to remain for the foreseeable future. Once again, I’m left sitting here shaking my head and saying, “WOW!”
I would like to take this opportunity to invite you to visit the Roundup’s website wylr.net and my “Ramblings from the Road” section. The Roundup staff has grown tired of me returning from a long bull sale road trip and walking around the office rambling about random things I’ve picked up along the way. In most cases these outbursts contain thoughts, ideas and facts that have no bearing on, well, anything really, and in most cases contain a plethora of unrelated topics. The staff hopes you will help share the burden as my audience, thus helping them avoid my meager attempts to enlighten and enrich their lives. It will be on the website within the next few weeks, and I will update it as often as I can. It goes against my better judgment to give advice unless asked directly, so I will warn you going in: you will get what you pay for, and access to our website is free.
I am excited to have this opportunity, because one of the things I enjoy most about my job is getting to know all of you and visiting with you about what is on your mind. If you see me at a bull sale, gas station, restaurant or anywhere in between, please say hello. As you can tell by the bull sale ads in the paper this week, I will be traveling to many sales in the upcoming months. I also invite you to get in touch with me if I can aid you in finding a breeding program to fit your seedstock needs, or if you need someone to represent you at a sale. I am more than happy to assist you in any way I can – just let me know.
Until next time,