Murray Arnel: Fair result for inaugural Ray White Wodonga sale + southern market wrap

Murray Arnel, 21/06/2019

NVLX Wodonga 20 June 2019:


Steers: 360-450kg $1055- $1440, av 282c/kg; 280-360kg $900-$1060, avg 289c/kg; 200-280kg $550-$780, av 277c/kg

Heifers: 360-450kg $1035-$1180, av 281c/kg; 280-360kg $815-$970, av 283c/kg; 200-280kg $360-$645, av 218c/kg

EYCI: 495.50c/kg
Link to Facebook interview with James Brown: click here
Link to Facebook livestream of inaugrual FB live stream Ray White sale: click here

Ray White Livestock Albury staff, David Benson and James Brown with a line of heifers secured for a client at Tumbarumba, NSW. Mr Benson said his client had struggled to find suitable sheep to graze due to the recent heat in the mutton markets and saw these young heifers as a better short-term proposition.

THE Ray White Livestock network conducted its inaugural store cattle sale at the NVLX Barnawartha complex on Thursday offering a modest yarding of 940 head put together by a small handful of local producers and topped up by a number of drafts trucked in by northern branches.

With the quality of the yarding, in most parts, reflecting the severity of the northern season, buying interest remained steady as supporting local agents and district feeders retained their regular positions at the bidders’ rail.

Pleased with the overall result Ray White Livestock Albury franchisee and auctioneer, James Brown said all the company had hoped for was “a fair result”.

“We believe we have achieved our primary aim which was for a total clearance at satisfactory rates” Mr Brown said.

“Our steer penning, which were mostly sold in the 260-300c/kg range, were sold on a par to recent Wodonga rates while our heifers that offered weights for the feeders were perhaps a fraction dearer” he said.

“Our yarding also contained an abnormal number of small, light and not so well-bred types which despite the low rates of exchange should prove good buying over time”.

Blake O’Reilly, Ray White Livestock, Guyra/Armidale and Ray White Rural national livestock director, Bruce Birch made the trip south to Wodonga to oversee the sale of client cattle at the company’s inaugural NVLX store cattle market.

Blake O’Reilly from the Guyra/Armidale branch, who consigned 150 head from the New England area of northern NSW, said the sale was very good especially for the well-bred and well-presented lines of especially Angus stock followed by the Euro-breds.

“Taking into account the huge freight component our clients are 30-40c/kg better placed than offering these lines back at home” he said.

“Obviously, we’d prefer not to repeat the exercise again for the reputation these cattle carry at home but with small light cattle particularly hard to sell in the north our clients have been rewarded and we are very thankful for the support and the result” he said.

Topping the steer sale, a yard of four Angus steers, weighed at 495kg, made $1440 for C Pollock of Stanley, Vic. These were purchased on behalf of the Bunnaloo Feedlot, Bunnaloo, NSW while a second pen of seven Angus, 447kg made $1335 for the same connections.

A line of Limousin-Angus steers bred at Wantabadgery, NSW, by Tenandra Pastoral created plenty of interest amount local finishers and opportunity feeders, with a pen of seven 321kg punched out to $900 a head while a yard of 16, 264kg made $750.

Noogoorah Pastoral of Grafton, NSW sold 19 Angus steers, estimated 220kg, made $550 and a further 15 Angus, estimated 160kg at $460.

VG McClennan, Armidale, NSW was another out-of-region vendor selling 10 Angus steers, 261kg at $730 while Highfield Pastoral, Armidale, NSW sold a pen of 12 Angus estimated 220kg at $610.

And from near the NSW-Qld border I Mulcahy, Urbenville, NSW trucked a consignment of 35 Angus steers, estimated 200kg, that realized $640 a head following a journey of some 1250kms.

As mentioned, light weight young cattle most in plain store condition dominated this yarding. These were mostly sold with a $430 to $650 price tag. However, there were also some NT-bred Hereford-cross steers, which had spent time on irrigation country in northern Victoria, cleared at prices from $210 to $250 a head while their heifer sisters made $100 to $205.

Danny Herezo, from Muckatah near Katamatite was a busy buyer at the Ray White inaugural sale at Wodonga booking 250 steers and heifers to place on self-feeders at Strathmerton, Vic and on grass at Moama, NSW. The cattle, when prime, are destined for the southern domestic trade.

The demand for heifers tracked a similar road whereby the well-presented made good money up to 282c/kg for feeder weights while the better bred, lighter pens made 240-270c/kg.

The plain and off-bred types, which drew limited interest, made from $1/kg to $2/kg live.

Among the better sales of heifers, HJ Chisholm Trading sold 13 Angus heifers, 412kg at $1160 while a yard of 18 C Pollock Angus heifers, 390kg, made $1110.

Tenandra Pastoral sold 12 Angus heifers, 365kg at $1035 while the same vendor’s yards of Limousin-Angus heifers- 11 head, 290kg made $815 and 21 head, 254kg, $645 a head.

A large one-mark line of 120 Angus heifers, from Davis Ag, Jingellic, NSW, saw local interest soar. Offered unweighed, these were sold to a top of $450, av $400 a head on an estimated average weight of 160kg live.

Around the Traps:

WVLX Mortlake

In other southern store cattle markets held this week, in the south west of Victoria, at the Western Victorian Livestock Exchange (WVLX) Mortlake Associated Agents penned and cleared a yarding of 3000 head at their monthly store cattle market.

Bruce Redpath, Elders said demand was very strong for an excellent line-up of cattle that saw all steer lines priced by higher by 10 to 20c/kg liveweight.

In the grown steer section, he said an excellent display saw the opening yard of Angus – weighed at 503kg – bid to 332c/kg “and this set the pace for the remainder of the market”.

All of the regular volume feeder buyers were present. Mr Redpath said “no one was missing” as Angus grown steers made from 310 to 334c/kg, while Hereford lines rose by considerably more – up by more than 20c/kg – to make 290-324c/kg.

The weaner steer market was also up on last month, as the weighed lines made up to 332c/kg and the best of the open auction lots sold to $900 for an estimated 355c/kg.

The market for weaner steers was patchy however according to Mr Redpath.

“The noted breeders’ lots that carried a reputation – large one-mark lines, well-bred and well-presented – sold exceptionally well but those not as well-credentialled offered chances”.

The Western District is reasonably wet and getting wetter Mr Redpath said. It is cold, hay is scarce and expensive but no-one is complaining”.

“The croppers are wrapped; the sheep guys are doing it tough in the middle of lambing – there are plenty of twins but there are also plenty of foxes for the fox shooters”.

Back to the market and Mr Redpath said the grown heifer market topped at 301c/kg with majority sold to the feeders priced in a range 280 to 300c/kg.

The weaner heifers also took a giant stride forward rising more than 30c/kg, making to 305c/kg. Open auction heifers he said were marked up by $100 a head on the previous month’s sale, making from $500 to $700/head.

The joined female market was also strong but disappointing.

The 138 Angus cows, aged 6.5 to 7 years in the Pardoo, Colac herd dispersal, which were spring calvers, sold up to $1500 per head, while 40 head of Gilmour PTIC Angus Cows were sold not far behind at $1480.

These made the equivalent of 213c/kg live however the despairing aspect of these results according to Mr Redpath said is they were all absorbed by processors: “they’re out of the system, they’’ be gone forever”.

VLE Koonwarra

In the southeast of the state South Gippsland Stock Agents offered in their fortnightly VLE Koonwarra store cattle sale a reduced penning of 1900 head.

“Numbers are getting less and less from the two big autumn sales when 4500 to 5000 head were penned” said James Kyle of Stevens Egan and Johnson.

“And while the number are getting fewer, the weight is also disappearing from the heavier lines of feeder steers although the two major feeders – JBS and Teys – were active along with the usual following of opportunity feeders feeding for the domestic trade”, he said.

“I think we’d have call the sale fully firm to 10c/kg dearer on the feeder lines”.

‘There was not the weight nor the “rubbishy” secondary and plain cattle that there have been in the previous markets. But with a number of processor orders also poking through the store pens anything that wasn’t wanted for the paddock definitely went for slaughter”.

The unjoined heifer demand he said was also consistently priced between 260 and 280c/kg.

“There was also not the weight but the buying support was solid”.

“Basically, you would have call it was a fairly stock standard store sale for Koonwarra for this time of the year”.

“All local buyers, all from southern Gippsland and most people preparing to sit om their hands until the cold of the winter passes”.

Meanwhile in the Riverina, Jason Andrews, Elders reports while conditions in the agricultural areas immediately around Deniliquin are presently okay it is patchy further out into the pastoral country where the hand-feeding of stock is still continuing.

He says there is some talk of agistment being taken in to the north of Hay towards Booligal following some rain received earlier in the year but generally the grass has stopped as more rain is needed.

“It’s not ideal because this time of the year is meant to be our main growing season but if the whole of Riverina doesn’t get a reasonable fall within the next month we’ll be no better off than last year, he said.

The movement of stock he says has come to a standstill in the area as lambing starts for the traditional June/July lambers or continues for the early lambers.

And, as far as cattle are concerned “we held our first sale at Deniliquin for 2.5 months last week and that was only because one vendor had to move”.

“Regardless of if it rains or not, there won’t be much to sell anyway,” he said.


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  1. Leann Dax, 21/06/2019

    Congratulations James Brown on a wonderful first sale at Barnawatha. And great story Murray Arnel like always leaving no stone unturned.

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