Richie Mann and daughter, Posie, of Penshurst competed on grown heifers to possibly join at the Ballarat feature female sale, with the market’s major feeder buyer Roger Stanton, Thomas Foods International in close proximity.AN ABSENCE of Gippsland and South Australia districts buyers saw demand for joined and calved females fail to meet seller expectations at the Ballarat feature female sale on Friday.
With an outstanding display of breeding cattle penned, the best-priced joined Angus heifers made $1600 a head, with the next best sold at $1500, followed by $1440 and then $1400.
Away from these four plus-$1400/hd sales, the remainder of the joined heifer yarding met a doughy demand and market prices pitched on $1000 to $1300.
Meat processors supported the joined heifer market with their purchases reportedly destined for grazing purposes.
The $1600 market-top was secured for a pen of rising 2.5 year-old Langi Kal Kal Angus heifers, pregnancy tested in-calf (PTIC) to Innesdale Stud Angus bulls for a 10-week calving, on a June-2 mating.
Sold by Corrections Victoria and secured by Landmark Wangaratta for Phillip Callus, Calview Pastoral, Wangaratta, the north-east order also took home a further pen of 11 from the LKK line priced at $1440.
The $1500 sale was the first pen sold on the day. Offered by JT Springvale, Waubra, this was a yard of 12 Ardrossan-blood Angus heifers, PTIC to Banquet-blood Angus bulls while Pine Park of Newlyn sold a pen of 36 Landfall-blood Angus heifers, 2.5 years, PTIC to LKK Angus bulls for a 10 week March-onwards calving.
The 86 head of joined heifers purchased by processor Thomas Foods International, which included the pen of 36 Pine Park heifers ranged in price from $1060 to $1400. These were purchased in the early parts of the joined heifer-run and included some of heaviest heifers in the market.
Rob Patterson, Ballangeich, was one of those disappointed vendors who met the sub-par market with a line of 116 Angus heifers specially selected from the Wodonga and Hamilton weaner last year and depastured to “Sons of Banquet B107” for an eight-week late February calving.
Selling pens at $1260, $1220 and $1100, Mr Patterson said it was sad to see so many quality young breeders going to the processors.
TB White & Sons principal Leo White agreed the joined heifer market had not met the expectations of some vendors.
“Perhaps those expectations were wrongly based,” Mr White said.
“The market in the New Year, admittedly, has been very strong, especially the trade-in value of the older cows, which has made buying in this market most affordable.”
Elders’ auctioneer Graeme Nicholson said vendors who had set more realistic expectations were more satisfied with their results.
“Prices of $1100-$1300 a head secured for the large majority of these sales can be viewed as good selling,” Mr Nicholson said.
“They have made no more or less than in any other similar recent sales.”
HF Richardson auctioneer James Haddrick also said it was tough going through the early parts of the market. And once off the “named” cattle, he said the market became tougher to find buyer and even some of the better known cattle didn’t get their just desserts.
“The rest of the sale was very good, very solid without breaking records,” Mr Haddrick said.
“Prices of $2-$2.15/kg for unjoined grown heifers, and to 235c/kg lwt for lighter weaners, can be considered good money.”
“We’ve seen it better but not by much.”
He said the depth of feeder competition was limited, with only five main competitors – “however they kept the rate up”.
“And anything that offered bloom through the weaner yarding drew the interest from processors”.
Among the best sales of grown heifers stood a price of $950/head for a yarding of Angus, 473kg.
These were offered by Perewurr Farms, while Murdeduke Angus sold 458kg Angus heifers at $940 and JK Irving, a pen of 15 Angus, 440kg, at $935.
Several large one-vendor consignments also met with good interest with regional backgrounders taking a number home for the winter trade market and some for breeding purposes.
A breeder’s line of 165 Banquet/Weeran/Lawsons-blood Angus heifers from Banongill, Skipton made to $770 and averaged $699 while Glenthompson Pastoral sold 175 Banquet/Te Mania/Mt Fyans-blood heifers to $910, average $759.
Better sales of weaner heifers were made to $810 a head for Wimmera Downs Black baldy heifers, 354kg, and $800 for 16 Angus 339kg offered by Glenderee Hill.
Across the grown and weaner heifer yarding selling overall averaged 210-212c/kg.
The demand for cow and calf outfits meanwhile was sluggish as selling stretched into the afternoon in the 4300-head yarding after the 10am start.
Best priced was a pen of re-depastured first-calf Angus heifers, with 3-4 month-old Angus calves at foot. This three-for-one outfit, sold by R&C Douglass, made $1620 while other sales included $1560 a head paid for P&M Prendergast’s line third-calf Angus cows, rejoined to Charolais bulls, with Charolais CAF, and $1520 paid for LG Harrison’s a line of first-calf Hereford-Shorthorn heifers, rejoined to Limousin bull, with Angus claves at foot.
Most other sales of cows and calves made $1100-$1300 which according to agents represented spilt value or a slightly better.
Sales of joined cows (yet to calve) made $950-$1380.
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