Buoyed by its successful debut in 2023, this year’s annual Great Basin Bull sale in two weeks will capitalize on the increased number of bulls and buyers at the Rafter 3C Complex.
The bull sale took on a different look in 2023 by combining the annual Fallon All-Breeds Sale and Yerington’s Snyder Livestock “Bulls for the 21st Century” merged into one sale for 2023. Churchill County and the Nevada Cattlemen’s Association reached an agreement to conduct the late-winter bull sale in Fallon.
“It was a great success, and we had few hurdles,” said Jim Barbee, Churchill County manager. “The (combined) event benefits the city and county by having folks come here from out of the area.”
Barbee said the NCA continues to be a sponsor and also has a representative on the committee that organizes the sale.
Martin Paris, the NCA’s executive director, said the 2023 bull sale was — by all accounts — a great event, and it will only become better.
“We had about 200 bulls assigned, and that was good,” Paris said of the 2023 sale.
Prior to the bull sale at the Rafter 3C, Parris said the NCA hosted the sale at the Fallon Livestock Exchange nine miles west of Fallon. After the agreement to merge both Snyder’s sale with the Fallon All-Breeds Bull Sale, Paris said it made sense to have a central location.
“We still wanted it in the area,” Paris said. “We endorsed the sale and so did our members. It’s a good revenue for sales by bringing the bulls here.”
The 2022 sale attracted about 300 buyers and sellers, and the average for the sold bulls came in at $4,730. A bull consigned by Hone Ranch, sold for $11,000 to Ashley Cockrell of Cedarville, Calif.
The NCA also received the proceeds of a bull in lot one as a fundraiser for all the work they do on behalf of cattle producers in Nevada and the surrounding states. Jeff Lommori of Wellington bought the son of RAF Arsenal 806 for $6,000.
Barbee said the county reaped the benefit of buyers and sellers staying in the area and patronizing local businesses.
For this year’s bull sale, Barbee said many of the familiar events planned in two weeks include the dog trials branding and a dinner and dance on Friday night for participants to see old friends or to meet others who are coming to the area for the first time.
Barbee said one of the goals of the bull sale is not only to welcome the agriculture community to the dale but to attract a wide group of buyers. According to Barbee, the county has been working to expand the vendors’ participation.
Most of the buyers and vendors will be arriving later in the week, but Barbee said the bulls will be transported to the Rafter 3C Complex beginning on Valentine's Day, Feb. 14. On Thursday, he said the bulls will be processes and have a veterinarian check. Then, a grading committee will assess the bulls.
The 2023 bull sale entered the world of modern technology. Rather than having the bulls enter a small arena and have buyers bid on their favorite beasts, the committee will record the bulls for digital. playback. and then replay the inside the arena beginning Saturday morning. Based on the DVDs ,the buyers will then wrangle in their bidding.
“By doing this, there will be less stressful on the livestock,” Barbee said.
“The video is pretty good,” Paris said, but then referring the previous method of showing the bulls.
“The video was pretty good,” he added. We rans some bulls in the ring, but some bulls can still get excited.”
Paris said the video adds another angle for the buyers.