Breeding stud cattle was a natural progression for us, having been immersed in both of our families very successful Simmental studs from a young age. Upon purchase of our first properties, we initially ran a mixed commercial female herd comprised of Droughtmaster, Brahman, Brangus and Santa Gertrudis females mated to Simmental bulls. Weaners were grown out to trade weights and sold through our local Toogoolawah Saleyards.
Over the years, we realised that the Droughtmaster cows were the best performing of the breeds and were extremely low maintenance. They showed high tick and buffalo fly resistance, were easy calving, excellent mothers and were very easy doing, dealing well with both extremes of heat in summer and frosted pastures through winter. In our opinion, the Droughtmaster breeders were clearly the best females and were the ultimate "oven" for both pure and crossbreeding programs.
This appreciation of the breed led to the start of High Country Droughtmasters in 2010.
Initially, we built our female numbers by purchasing the best breeders we could find from stud sales (often the top priced animals), as well as purchasing groups of females from well established studs privately. We were chasing high content in our female lines to ensure calving ease, good mothering and doing ability and purchased multiple Billabong bulls over this time to help us retain our home bred heifers. Bulls included Billabong Ridley, Billabong Watson, Billabong Xavier, Billabong Castlemaine and Billabong Zeeman.
High Country Droughmasters
Some of our purchases
Karragarra Olga - $9000 top priced female Karragarra entire drop sale
Billabong Vienetta - top priced heifer Billabong sale 2011
Billabong Monday 3rd - purchased at the Billabong Heart of the herd sale
Rocky view 1151 - $7500 at Rocky View dispersal with Billabong Yukon $20000 bull calf at foot - embryo donor
Nelma Monique - purchased for $6000 at the Nelma Dispersal - flushed with frozen embryos and embryo calves on the ground
RSVP Dahlia - $4000 top priced unjoined female National Female Sale
With 90% of our replacement females now homebred. Our knowledge of the cow family history together with excellent sire data ensures we are improving our herd each year by selecting truly superior females. We also purchase a handful of heifers annually that we believe are exceptional, to ensure we maintain a variety of bloodlines and to support fellow breeders. Our breeders, replacement and sale females as well as young sale bulls are run over five properties in the Brisbane Valley.
We run a herd of over 200 registered breeders on our home properties at Eskdale, as well as being involved in partnerships with multiple
co-operative breeders who run their own purebred Droughtmaster breeders, both registered and unregistered. Together with these breeders, we utilise our sires to complement their individual herds. These partnerships allow us to offer both stud registered and purebred commercial cattle from over 1000 breeders mated to over 37 registered stud sires. These herds were selected not only for their quality female herds but also for their impressive management and professionalism.
We work closely with these breeders to produce both bulls and females that not only represent a vast array of strong genetics, but also meet our extensive quality requirements. This is pivotal to our production of genetically diverse stock, which offers continual options for our clients annually to use new bloodlines that are complete out crosses to their previous purchases. It also allows us to use increased selection pressure on each calf drop to ensure the animals we offer exceed our stringent criteria.
High Country BRED
Today, we are extremely proud of the herd that we have created. Vision and planning has ensured that it is a fertile productive herd, genetically diverse and now self generating. Growing in quality and consistency year after year. We are excited about the future!
High Country Eve - multiple ribbon winner and now a very productive female for High Country 'S' Droughtmasters
High Country Easter Egg - another multiple broad ribbon winner - High Country 'S' Droughtmasters
Females by Billabong Xavier - showing all of the skin and feminity of this line.
Glenlands Quarry Replacement and sale heifers
High Country Golden Girl replacement heifer sired by Glen Fosslyn Idol and now owned by Lachlan Young
High Country Epiphany another female sired by Billabong Xavier
High Country Edward retained sire by Billabong Xavier
High Country Elton by Glenlands Quarry sold to Seymour Droughtmasters $12000
High Country Errol by Billabong Ridley sold for $10000
START OF THE 'ON PROPERTY' SALE
2014 saw the first of the on property bull and female sales. With crowds of over 300 people, the success of the sale has increased annually, with our cattle sold to areas as far as Western Australia, South Australia, Atherton Tablelands and St George, as well as many that sold locally. We very much appreciate the support from both new and return clients and look forward to the sale growing and evolving over the future years.
The 2017 sale saw our bulls sell to a 100% clearance with bulls selling to a top of $27000, bottom of $5000 and an average bull price of $9730.
The sign at the entrance to High Country Droughtmasters
Cars lined up for our 2017 sale
The amazing crowds that have come to support our sales - we are humbled and grateful for all of the support that we have received both from fellow breeders and from local graziers. - Thank you.
2017 Sale photos - Bulls and females
High Country First Rate selling for $27000 to Munda Reds WA. From left - Steph Laycock, Ben Wright, Olivia Dewar, Jack Fogg.
High Country Foundation selling for $15000 to Cory Kruger Corolla Droughtmasters
High Country Freeland selling for $15000 to the Brooks family Major Droughtmasters
High Country Finnick selling for $19000 to Ivanhoe Droughtmasters
High Country Fast and the Furious selling for $17000 to Herb Perkins
High Country Fearless selling for $9000 to Sword Holdings
Females sold equally well with our cows and calves selling to a top of $5000 and an average of $4000. Our young unjoined heifers topped at $4250 and averaged $2807. As with all of our heifers we have a 100% fertility and milk guarantee.
High Country Eleanor sold for $5000 to Major Droughtmasters
High Country Giselle sold for $3750 to Major Droughtmasters
High Country Gypsy sold for $4250 to Simto Droughtmasters