South Otago bull breeders Garry and Julene McCorkindale have spent $45,000 on a bull in a bid to continue a "proud" 30-year history of improving the genetic traits of their herd.
Garry, speaking to about 70 people in a shed on his 750ha sheep and beef farm in Waitahuna and more than 20 buyers livestreaming the auction, said the years leading up to the 30th annual bull sale last week had "flown by real quick".
"Time flies when you're having fun."
However, the week leading up to the sale had been "trying".
"We were away on Saturday night and came home to find our kitchen flooded after rats chewed through three water pipes."
Consequently, Julene made the lunch for the sale in a hotel in Lawrence.
"You wouldn't believe you could make so much food from a hotel room," Garry said.
He was proud of the genetic improvements made in his herd over three decades.
All of the cattle offered at the sale in May were in the top 10 per cent of the Simmental breed in Australasia for one or more of the growth traits.
"It's the first time we've managed to do that."
He was also proud the bulls were ranked in the top half for temperament.
Of the 19 bulls offered, 16 sold, going for an average price of $7656.
The two bulls fetching the top prices of $11,500 were Glenside Hotshot 19004 and Glenside Hero 19045.
Garry, speaking to Southern Rural Life, said he bought a bull online via bidr for $45,000 on May 25.
He bought the bull, Kerrah H410, from Kerrah Simmentals in Wairoa, the biggest Simmental breeder in New Zealand.
"He's a very good, all-round bull."
The number of bulls in New Zealand which could improve genetic traits in his herd were "very limited".
The breed was popular internationally but it lacked any "new blood" which suited New Zealand production systems.
The $45,000 price tag for Kerrah H410 was the most he had ever paid for a bull but it would allow him to continue to improve the genetics of his herd.
"He's very quiet - he's got docility - he's very sound and put together extremely well — phenotypically, he's very good."