QUALITY new season lambs continued to sell around 600c/kg in New South Wales late last week, with suckers making up about 30 percent of the lamb yarding at Cowra on Friday.
The National Livestock Reporting Service said new season lambs sold $2-$4 dearer at Cowra, with 18.1-22kg trade weights with $9-$10 skins making $131-$146 or 559-642c/kg cwt. The 22.1-24kg suckers ($9-$10 skins) sold from $145-$153 or 591-622c/kg.
At Griffith in NSW, the 20.1-24kg new season lambs with $9 skins made $142-$152, or 596-605c/kg. In Victoria at Shepparton, a single line of 22.1-24kg suckers with $10 skins sold for $130 or 500c/kg.
NLRS lamb indicators mostly firm on Friday
The NLRS quoted its Eastern States Daily Lamb Indicators as mostly firm after Friday’s saleyard sales, although all indicators fell – from 9-19 cents – during the past week.
The lamb ESDIs, with their daily and weekly movements, are: restocker 500c/kg, up 1 cent, down 19c; Merino 527c/kg, up 2c, down 9c; light 532c/kg, down 1c, down 16c; trade 578c/kg, down 1c, down 15c; heavy 580c/kg, up 2c, down 12c. The national trade lamb indicator lifted 1 cent on Friday to 578c/kg and the heavy lamb indicator rose 2 cents to 580c/kg.
The mutton ESDI closed firm on 384 on Friday, but fell 8 cents for the week, and the national mutton indicator finished on 384c/kg, up 1 cent.
Young ewes sought on AuctionPlus
Young ewes were keenly sought on AuctionsPlus last week, market operations officer Tom Rookyard said.
Young Merino ewes made $75.50-$186, for an average of $129. The top priced lot were 20-21 month old June shorn Petali blood ewes from Forbes, NSW. They sold for $186 and were scanned in lamb 113 percent to Poll Dorset rams. Aged Merino ewes made $89-$132.50, averaging $104.
The trend of buyers looking to restock carried over into the crossbred ewes, with ewe lambs making $76-$187.50. The top-price of $187.50 was paid for 230 10-11 month-old February-shorn Border Leicester-Dohne cross ewes, scanned 136pc in lamb to White Suffolk rams.
Young crossbred breeders made $134-$196, the top priced lot were 2-3 year-old March shorn Composite-Border Leicester/Merino cross ewes from Strathkellar, Victoria. These ewes weighed 70kg and were scanned 100pc in lamb to Lambpro stud rams.
Mr Rookyard said sheep and lamb numbers dropped by 4000 head to 32,235 on AuctionsPlus last week.
A large offering of Merino wether lambs attracted buyer interest, with prices ranging from $56-$85 and averaging $69.50. The top priced lot was a line of 36kg lwt Stavely Park and Mt Yulong blood wethers, with a five cm skin from Cavendish, Victoria.
Prices were firm for a large offering of store and mixed sex lambs with lines weighing 25-28kg lwt making from $78.50-$104.50, averaging $86 or 760c/kg cwt. Lambs weighing 29-33kg made from $79-$115, averaging $93 or 726c/kg. The heaviest line of lambs offered were 41kg lwt (16.8kg cwt) mixed sex March-April drop Border Leicester/Merino lambs selling for $121.50 at Lake Cargelligo.
Cowra new season lambs make 600-610c/kg
In New South Wales at the Cowra saleyards last Friday, the agents yarded 5770 lambs, 120 more than last week, and 690 sheep, 20 more.
The NLRS said quality was very good for the 1900 new season lambs. The heavy old grades were also well-presented and there some lighter plainer lines. Mainly trade and heavy weight lambs were penned, with a limited number of stores. Competition was solid from all the usual buyers on the new season and heavy old lambs resulting in a dearer market.
New season lambs were $2-$4 dearer and averaged from $141-$148 or 600-610c/kg cwt. Medium and heavy trade weight old lambs were $1-$2 dearer and averaged 585-590c/kg. The quality heavy trade weights sold from $125-$140. Heavy weight lambs were firm to $7 dearer and averaged from 560-590c/kg. A pen of extra heavy lambs that sold for $196 had an estimated carcase weight of 31kg.
Mutton quality varied. Medium Merino ewes averaged $98 or 394c/kg cwt. Heavy crossbred ewes averaged $134.90 or 351c/kg and heavy Merino wethers sold to $130.
Griffith new season lambs sell to $152
At the Griffith saleyards on Friday, the agents yarded 3995 lambs, 1331 more than last week, and 2018 sheep, 1742 more.
Lamb quality declined slightly from the previous sale, although there were still some well-finished lambs. The usual buyers competed in a market that was firm to slightly dearer for the quality on offer. A few pens of well-finished new season lambs sold from $142-$152. Old light lambs made from $102-$112. Trade weights were firm to $2 dearer, at $114-$149. Heavy and extra heavy weight lambs sold firm to $3 better. Heavy lambs sold from $151-$158. Extra heavy weights made from $148-$197. Carcase prices ranged from 581-616c/kg.
The sheep were mostly Merinos and quality was again very mixed. Merino ewes sold from $80-$140. Crossbred ewes received from $94-$110.
Shepparton lamb quality slips
In Victoria at the Shepparton saleyards on Friday, the agents yarded 720 lambs, 236 fewer than last week, and 441 sheep, 159 less.
The NLRS said apart from a few pens of supplementary-fed lambs, quality was generally of a very plain and mixed standard. One regular export buyer returned this week, supporting the top end of the slaughter market. However, due to the lack of numbers and quality it is not possible to quote price trends.
The number of lambs displaying good carcase weight and finish was very limited. Four pens of heavy lambs, weighing 26-28kg cwt, sold from $165-$169 and a pen of three extra heavy lambs topped the sale at $175. A few pens of better quality trade weight lambs sold from $122-$140. One pen of new season lambs, estimated at 24kg cwt with a $10 skin, sold for $130. The balance of the yarding was mainly secondary lambs lacking weight and fat cover which sold from $60-$90. In carcase terms, most slaughter lambs were estimated to range from 500-550c/kg, with odd sales of the better bred and finished types making to 590c/kg.
Numbers and quality were also limiting factors in the sheep sale. Heavy crossbred ewes sold from $112-$135.50, with the middle run of trade mutton making $70-$81.
Sources: MLA, NLRS, AuctionsPlus.