Buyers certainly showed their support for good quality beef genetics and also their confidence in the beef industry, with strong prices offered in late January at one of the first bull sales of season staged by Lazy S Ranch of Mayerthorpe, AB.
It was the 52nd annual sale at the ranch owned by the Ainsworth family that includes Stewart and Doreen Ainsworth and their family’s, consisting of sons Grant and his sons Carson and Jace, Greg and his wife Tracey and son Jade, and daughter Donna and her husband Larry and their daughters Shaylyn and Lindsay. Daughter- in-law Claire runs the local vet clinic in Mayerthorpe and Whitecourt.
Lazy S Ranch marketed about 200 head of mostly yearling bulls this year, including Red and Black Simmental, Red and Black Angus purebreds as well as their own crossbred bulls known as SimAngus Beefmakers.
“We’ve been at it a long time and genetics are always improving,” says Doreen Ainsworth. “We have a lot of repeat buyers and they have confidence in the quality of cattle that we produce.”
Many buyers visited the ranch to look at bulls ahead of the Jan. 30 sale day. And with everyone paying attention to COVID-19 protocols several also attended the ranch on sale day. “The on-line sales were really an important marketing tool this year,” says Ainsworth. “People had a look at bulls ahead of time, but then could connect to the Direct Livestock Marketing Systems (DLMS) website during the sale to actually place their bids.” To minimize stress on animals, all bulls stay in their pens on the ranch during the sale and only enter the sales ring by video.
Prices paid during the 2021 sale were ahead of 2020 bids. Daughter-in-law Tracey Ainsworth reports the overall average for 196 bulls was $6,300 per head, with Red Simmental bulls being the top sellers.
The breed breakdown is as follows:
Black Angus — $6163
Black Beefmakers —$5125
Black Simmental —$5970
Red Angus —$5107
Red Beefmakers —$6547
Red Simmental— $7388
During their 50-plus years in the beef business Lazy S Ranch has sold more than 5000 head of bulls to beef producers from British Columbia to Prince Edward Island. “Everyone knows if you don’t have bulls in the pasture there won’t be any meat in the stores,” says Doreen Ainsworth. “We are proud to be suppliers of good quality genetics to the cow-calf industry.”
Lee Hart is editor of Cattleman’s Corner based in Calgary. Contact him at 403-592-1964 or by email at [email protected]