Cattle Stations for Sale
A lot of interest is being shown in Cattles Stations for Sale in the ‘Top End’ (the northern parts of Australia). This attention reflects reduced prices in the cattle markets. Interest is being shown from local and international investors. This in turn has created an increase in the prices of land within the top of Western Australia and the Northern Territory.
What is a Cattle Station?
It is, in its basic definition, a very large farm. That is a simplification as most Cattle Stations cover areas of land that would fit several farms within it. In fact, some stations are bigger than some European countries! Anna Creek Station in South Australia is the biggest Cattle Station in Australia and covers 34,000 km2 which is bigger than Belgium.
Why are they so big? Because the country is so dry and lacking in vegetation that a large amount of land is needed to support enough cattle to make a living. As a result, the animals are basically wild and reared in a very natural way. They are born and raised without human contact, grass-fed and rarely require any chemical treatments and this results in a better tasting steak than the grain fed cattle.
As the name suggests, a Cattle Station concentrates on Cattle rather than crops or other animals like sheep but quite often other animals or some sort of crop will be on the property too. Weather conditions call for diversity, especially when dealing with such a large property. Most of the ‘Top End’ is subject to drought conditions at some point and lesser animals like sheep are not as drought tolerant to the degree that cattle, camels or buffalo can be. Some Cattle Stations even farm crocodiles as a secondary source of income or turn to crops like Mangoes or Bananas or more exotic fruit like the Durian or Rambutan.
What sort of Cattle Stations for Sale?
The majority are straight beef cattle stations but there are a few other rural types available too that are either a mixture of livestock and crops or specialise in one or the other. The main differences are the size of the property.
What sort of price range can you expect?
That all depends on how much land is on offer and, therefore, how many head of cattle are included. You can expect to pay anywhere from around one million to ten million dollars. For example, a 60,000ha to 70,000ha property around Katherine will average $7.5m depending on what else is on it and where exactly it is.
How does the Australian Cattle Station Operate?
The remoteness and size of the station will define the lifestyle. You are isolated and your next door neighbour could be an hour’s, if not a day’s drive away. Kids use their computers to “go to” school over the internet with the “School of the Air” and it’s normal for an 11-year-old to drive a vehicle and use a rifle.
You are part of the team from the moment you arrive. Everyone relies on each other and works hard from sunrise to sunset, especially during the mustering season. Horses are used predominately but more and more stations are starting to use helicopters and motorbikes to round up the cattle. There is no such thing as weekends or public holidays when there is work that needs to be done during muster.
There’s more to it than that of course but that’s the crux of working on a Cattle Station.
Sounds tough and hard work? It is. But ask anyone and they will tell you it is totally worth it and they wouldn’t have it any other way.