Summary: Yarded 3990
Feeder rating (versus EYCI): +31pts
Steers: 500-650kg: $2940-$3280, av 563c/kg: 360-500kg $2380-$3040 av 625c/kg; 280-360kg $1750-$2410, av 656c/kg.
Grown heifers: 360-450kg $1900-$2300, 470-510c/kg; WEANERS 300-380kg $1770-$2270, 585-640c/kg: 200-280/k 500-600c/kg
TRADERS seeking weight and quality have once again made little change to recent-strong Ballarat store cattle prices when a larger penning of 4100 met a keen gathering of buyers on Friday.
Averaging $6.15 a kilogram or $2668 a head for the popular 400 to 500kg feeder steer range, overall prices were viewed as being fully firm compared to the centre’s month-earlier and smaller April sale.
HF Richardson auctioneer James Haddrick said the pens of heavier cattle that offered both weight and quality- steers and heifers – sold particularly well.
He said the same team of feeder and Gippsland bullock finisher buyers were active however, any smaller and lighter weaners, which there was considerably more of, could have been as much as $100-$150 a head cheaper unless they were offered as desirable larger lines.
“I didn’t see last month’s sale” Mr Haddrick admitted.
However, from the people I’ve spoken to, and the moves they reported last month, for me it lines up to my take on two months ago he said.
Reflecting on the grown steer yarding, Mr Haddrick said there was not the depth in the heavier cattle that would normally be seen at Ballarat.
The reason for that he said was a reflection of the dry autumn in the local area which had led to good numbers being moved on.
However, those that were sold he said touched $6, and up to $6.25c/kg for steers weighed 450kg and heavier, and $6.20 to $6.80c/kg for the younger 14-15-month-old steers, 380-440kg.
“These all sold particularly well, and it was the same for the heifers, even for pens that had begun to winter-off”.
With agents penning 600 head more than the April sale, and with few heavier cattle penned, Elders auctioneer Nick Gray saw the grown steer sale as being dearer.
He highlighted the sale of 18 Stonehill Angus, 641kg, that made $3320 while the sale’s highest price of $3440 went to Newstead vendor Loddon View with a yard of 21 Angus, weighed at 711kg.
The Labbett family, Clarkes Hill sold 27 Angus, 604kg, at $3170 while vendor Kimoy sold 22 Angus 556kg at $3180.
At 518kg vendor, Ecclesall sold 16 Angus that made $3070 while P&G Walker “Bullaharre Park” sold a yard of 26 Angus, 486kg, at $3040.
A second yard of 16 Bullaharre Park Angus, 433kg, made $2650 while a third pen of 21, 414kg, returned $2670.
CNG & ML Crocker “Merrangell” were rewarded with a price $2820 for 22 Angus weighed at 448kg while vendor Ashgrove sold a yard of 51 Angus, 399kg at $2630.
Also cleared in the sub-400kg range, M&L Gleeson, Clarendon sold 26 Angus, 381kg at $2580 while Eversley Farm, sold 20 Angus, 392kg, at $2520.
TB White principal Leo White, agreed the grown steer demand was very good and stronger.
“I saw it as being 10c/kg dearer for the heavier steers suiting the feedlots” Mr White said.
“They had to have weight and the right breeding whereas the plainer cattle and the coloured cattle were cheaper by at least $100” Mr White said.
And although the market for the small weaner cattle was softer Mr White said it made them more buyable at prices between $1700 and $1900 for steers weighed 250 to 300kg.
“At that money they appear more affordable to buy” he told Beef Central.
Nick Gray confirmed increased numbers of lighter weight spring-drop weaners throughout the 4100-strong May yarding, and these he agreed met a softer trend.
A large percentage he said were taken by commission buyer and feedlot orders, with Gippsland, northern Victoria and eastern NSW being the most active.
A number of cattle also stayed local which was good to see, Mr Gray said.
Among the larger sales of weaners, the Conroy family “Carweean” Ballan sold 21 Angus 356kg at $2410.
IG & DM Binks, sold 15 Angus, 344kg at $2330 Wylie & Co “Daelroam” sold 28 Angus, 311kg at $2240 while The Point Pastoral sold 36 Angus, 282kg at $2060.
Also sold at $2060 was a pen of 24 Angus, 277kg sold by Bells Run.