University News

2007 Bull Test Sale

February 19, 2007

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MACOMB, IL -- The Beef Evaluation Station at Western Illinois University will hold its 35th Annual Performance Tested Bull Sale at 7 p.m. Friday, March 16 at the WIU Livestock Center on Tower Road.

According to Ken Nimrick and Bruce Engnell, test station managers, with the recent increase in feed prices, feed efficiency becomes even more important than in the past, and the WIU sale is one of the few places where all bulls have individual feed efficiency data. Approximately 45 rugged, thick-made bulls with a lot of capacity and bred-in performance will be offered for sale. Breeds represented are Angus, Simmental, Red Angus, Gelbvieh and composites. All bulls came on test Merial SureHealthTM certified and tested free of Johnes. Again this year all bulls were tested free of persistently infected BVD.

"At WIU, all bulls are tested under identical conditions so we can see how bulls from different breeders compare when fed and managed the same. Our computer feeding system determines how much each bull eats per day so we can measure the amount of feed it takes to put on a pound of gain," Engnell explained. "The emphasis in the beef industry today is on reducing input costs, and producers can cut costs quickly through greater efficiency of feed usage, using the information the test station provides."

Extensive production information is available on these bulls to help breeders improve their herds through known genetic information. In addition to average daily gain and feed efficiency, data will also be provided on ribeye area, 12th rib fat, marbling, scrotal circumference, pelvic area, frame score and birthweight, plus EPD data from the respective breed associations. Again this year some bulls will have DNA test data available.

"The WIU Bull Test provides breeders and potential buyers with more performance information than any other Performance Tested Bull Sale," Nimrick added. "All bulls offered for sale have completed a breeding soundness exam and are ready for the upcoming breeding season."

Lowderman Auction Service will auctioneer the sale. The WIU bull test station is open daily for those wanting to view the bulls prior to the March 16 sale. Catalogs will be sent March 1 to those on the mailing list. For more information or to request a sale catalog, contact Nimrick at 309/298-1288, Engnell at 309/298-2233 or the WIU agriculture department at 309/298-1080. The sale catalog and additional information on the bulls is also available at

Posted By: Darcie Shinberger (
Office of University Communications & Marketing