Date: 3/4/2014 12:00:00 AM

Title: ICA kicks off 2014 bull sales, March 17 in Bloomfield; March 28 in Dunlap

The Iowa Cattlemen’s Association (ICA) will hold its first two performance-selected bull sales of the season on Monday, March 17, at the Bloomfield Livestock Auction Market in Bloomfield; and Friday, March 28 at the Dunlap Livestock Auction in Dunlap. Both sales begin at 6:30 p.m.

“With the U.S. cattle industry reporting its lowest cattle inventory since 1952, the time is right to select a bull that will maximize your investment in the cow-calf segment,” says Kellie Carolan, ICA seedstock manager. “The bulls consigned for these sales have the genetic potential to add pounds to your calf crop and dollars to your bottom line.”

The sales feature bulls that have met the standards of ICA’s Bull Evaluation Program, indicating they will provide genetics with high economic value to farmers with either commercial cow-calf or seedstock production.

“Breeders have consigned an excellent set of bulls that carry breed-leading pedigrees and outstanding EPDs (expected progeny differences),” says Carolan, who oversees the evaluation program.

All yearling bulls were tested from Oct. 28, 2013 to Feb. 17, 2014, at Van Meter Feedyard near Guthrie Center. The sale bulls represent the top 75% of the group tested, and were selected based on carcass, growth and reproductive merit.

At both sales, “buyers will find high performance bulls developed on a higher roughage ration,” Carolan says. “The offerings at these sales had an average gain of over 4.3 pounds per day on-test, plus many excel in calving ease and carcass traits.”

Bloomfield sale preview
The Bloomfield sale will include yearling and older fall bulls. The group includes 28 Angus yearling bulls, and 12 senior yearling bulls that will average 18-months of age at sale time.

The fall bulls were developed at the Kirkwood Community College test station; there are 11 Angus and one Simmental composite in the group.

Breeders of the highest-gaining bull from each division that qualified for the Bloomfield sale will be honored prior to the sale by ICA and Zoetis Animal Health. Those to be honored are: Jay Coble of Rhodes, who consigned Lot 28, an Angus bull sired by “SF Turtlerock RFI W124” which gained 5.51 pounds per day. Also, hitting a top mark was an Angus senior yearling bull, Lot 72, raised by Dianne Witt of Arcadia. This October 2012 son of “Meredith Alliance 37” gained 5.12 pounds per day.

Dunlap sale preview
Five breeds are represented in the bulls that will be sold in Dunlap. The 58 yearling bulls include 31 Angus, eight Charolais, six Simmentals, two Simmental Composites, and two Herefords.

Again, breeders of the highest-gaining bull from each breed will be honored by ICA and Zoetis Animal Health. Those to be honored are: KyleeKnop of Ida Grove, who consigned Lot 124, an Angus bull sired by “Sitz Upward 307R” which gained 5.27 pounds per day.

Hitting the top mark for Simmentals tested is Lot 163, raised by Cody and Jessica Wilson of Pierson. This son of “Sand Ranch Hand” gained 4.96 pounds per day. The top Charolais bull, Lot 152, came from Larry Wakefield, New Richland, MN. His ADG was 4.48 pounds, and he is the son of “WR Wrangler W601.”

In the Simmental Composite division, Cody and Jessica Wilson, Pierson, again consigned the top performing bull, Lot 171. This son of “Triple U Bull X3” gained 4.82 pounds per day on the 112-day test. And, Randy Golightly of Van Meter, had the top performing Hereford bull in the group. Lot 154 son of “Baja Loaded 90Y ET” gained 4.46 pounds per day.

The ICA Bull Evaluation Program, which has been in place since 1985, has two basic objectives: 1) to evaluate high-quality bulls in a common environment to benefit seedstock producers and; 2) to identify and merchandise a select group of bulls, which excel in traits that have a high economic value.

To accomplish the second objective, each bull must undergo a rigid evaluation process. “First, the bulls are placed on-test to evaluate their growth potential. Once the bulls finish the testing period, they undergo an ultrasound exam to gather carcass merit information as it relates to rib eye area size, amount of back fat, and the amount of intramuscular fat,” says Carolan.

There will be one other sale date for bulls that have been tested through the ICA evaluation program. It will be May 2 at the Tama Livestock Auction in Tama. A sale of performance-tested open heifers will also be held on that date.

For more information about the ICA Bull Evaluation Program or to receive a sale catalog, contact the ICA office at 515-296-2266.