A set of Angus-Gelbvieh cross feeder steers topped the market at the Superior Livestock Video Royale XVII Sale held July 27-31 in Winnemucca, Nev. Broadcast live from the Winnemucca Convention Center, the video auction had producers from 27 states consign over 238,000 head of calves, feeder cattle and breeding stock, according to Superior Livestock Auction.

Powles Gelbvieh Ranch, Bingham, Neb., consigned a set of 100 weaned steer calves at a base weight of 490 pounds that sold for $124, topping the market of that sale. The April born feeder steers were sold with a one percent shrink for delivery in early November.

A second set of 184 Powles Ranch Angus-Gelbvieh weaned steers weighing 530 pounds sold for $115.00, which was just shy of the $116.50 market high for that region and weight range.

The Powles Gelbvieh Ranch breeding program fully utilizes the benefits of the Angus-Gelbvieh cross in their commercial herd. The cowherd consists of Angus and Angus-Gelbvieh cross cows that are bred to Balancer™ bulls, said Bryon Powles.

“We maintain a cross of Angus and Gelbvieh by breeding to Balancer bulls and taking advantage of hybrid vigor,” commented Powles. “With straight Angus, you lose the hybrid vigor. By using Balancer herd bulls, we add growth to the calves.”

Besides having the right combination of genetics, the Powles have been able to get a premium for their calves by selling steers that are guaranteed to be weaned at least 30 days at time of delivery.

“We've been selling weaned calves for the past three or four years and have noticed a price premium for a little bit of extra effort,” said Powles.

Dustin Rippe, CattleFax analyst, attributes the market success of Powles feeder calves to several factors.

“This is a prime example of what the combination of good genetics and a tremendous reputation can have on market price,” said Rippe. “Powles calves are meeting what the industry is looking for; the right genetics from a Continental-British breed cross can produce premiums. Plus, they sold at the top of the seasonal market.”

Consigning to Superior Livestock Auction for the past 10 years, the Powles Ranch enjoys the convenience and flexibility of a video auction. According to Bryon, the video auction offers several benefits including eliminating any sale barn stress on the calves, the opportunity to sell early when the market is high, and the comfort of watching the sale from home. In addition the Powles like the fact that with a video auction they have been able to develop a relationship with buyers.

“With the video auction, you deal directly with the buyers. When the sale is over, you know where your calves are going,” said Powles.

For anyone considering using a video auction market, Bryon recommends it. He suggests that if you are comfortable predicting the weight of the calves to try it one year and see what a difference it can make.


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