AN increased offering of light steers was matched by strong buyer interest out of southern Queensland this week, as overall AuctionsPlus commercial cattle numbers jumped eight percent to 19,543 head.
Given the recent rain through Queensland it was no surprise that competition kicked into high gear this week for the lighter lines, with nine-out-of-ten young steer and heifer categories averaging higher.
Given the very wet May through many parts of Queensland, a surge in competition from buyers was always anticipated – time was just needed for things to dry out and transport access to be possible.
Adding to the recent rain has been this week’s release from the BOM, reiterating the high chances of another wet winter through eastern Australia. Rounding out the week, the first winter blast of 2022 is expected to hit the southern states in coming days – which will reportedly be welcome follow-up rain through parts of western Victoria and southern NSW.
An increased offering of both 200-280kg and 280-330kg steers failed to dint prices this week, with offerings up 12pc and 14pc respectively, on last week.
While clearance rates fluctuated between the two categories, 200-280kg steers averaged 44c/kg higher on last week, at 725c, with a subdued 57pc clearance rate for the 2822 head offered.
Steers 280-330kg averaged 21c/kg higher this week, at 710c, with a healthy 83pc clearance for the 2427 head offered.
From Forbes NSW, a line of 50 Shorthorn weaned steers 9-10 months averaging 290kg returned 771.6c/kg or $2240/head. Further north in Moree NSW, a line of 38 Poll Hereford weaned steers 10-11 months averaging 326kg returned 617c/kg or $2010.
While feeder steer offerings remained limited, increased demand had prices kicking 29c, or $132/head up on last week, averaging 565c/kg.
From Barcaldine, Western Queensland, a line of 208 Santa cross feeder steers, aged 14-20 months averaging 442kg, returned 531c/kg or $2350. Both lots will travel to Burra, SA.
For 200-280kg heifers, prices averaged 65c higher than last week at 755c – with a 64pc clearance for the 1560 head offered. There were substantial price gains through the heavier lines, with quality and bloodlines again highly sought-after, as clearance rates remained below average.
Boosting the weekly average for the 280-330kg category this week was 66 Wagyu heifers out of Roma, southern Queensland, averaging 302kg and ranging from 16–18-months which sold to $4020head or 1330c/kg liveweight.
The proven breeder category was again dominated by PTIC lines, with interest and catalogue views high, but immediate clearance rates below average.
The 3203 PTIC heifers sold to a cautious market, with a 55pc clearance, averaging $39 lower for the week, at $2733/head. From Richmond, North Queensland, a line of 100 Braford PTIC heifers joined to Santa bulls, aged 17-30 months and averaging 421kg, returned $2820 – headed to a buyer in Longreach.
Similarly, PTIC cows averaged lower on last week, down $272, at $2803 – with a higher 72pc clearance for the 2460 head offered. From Scone NSW, a line of 45 Angus PTIC cows joined to Angus bulls, aged 34 years and averaging 530kg returned $3700 – sold to a buyer from Glen Iris, Victoria.
From Winton, Western Queensland, a line of 50 Charolais cross cows and calves returned $2880/unit. The cows ranged in age from 2-14 years, averaged 460kg.