TRADE, heavy and restocker lamb prices dipped slightly late last week as more new season lambs came on the market.
But prices for the preferred trade and heavy suckers still held at 560-632c/kg cwt, while rates for 16.1-18 kg new season lambs continued to strengthen with help from restockers.
New season offerings are starting to dominate New South Wales saleyards, with suckers making up 72 percent of the Cowra yarding on Friday, and 46pc of the lambs offered at Griffith.
At the Griffith saleyards, the National Livestock Reporting Service quoted 12.1-18kg new season lambs with $1-$11 skins as making from $97-$122, or 607-669c/kg cwt. The 18.1-22kg trade lambs with $1-$10 skins made from $117-$127, or 575-591c/kg. Heavier 22.1-30kg lambs with $1-$12 skins sold from $139-$172, or 578-632c/kg.
At the Cowra saleyards, the 12.1-18kg new season lambs with $4-$9 skins made $69-$116.50, or 464-609c/kg. The trade weight suckers with $8-$11 skins sold from $120-$146, or 560-620c/kg. The 22.1-26kg lambs with $10-412 skins made $145-$166, or 571-622c/kg.
Shepparton sold a small line of 16.1-18kg new season lambs with $5 skins for $115 or 611c/kg.
NLRS restocker indicator falls 19 cents for the week
The Eastern States Daily Indicator for restocker lambs closed at 542c/kg after losing 7 cents on Friday and 19 cents for the week; the biggest fall for the week. The light lamb indicator was the only positive performer, closing 3 cents up at 542c/kg, a rise of 6 cents for the week.
The other lambs ESDIs with daily and weekly changes are: Merino 529c/kg, no daily change, down 8 cents for the week; trade 588c/kg, down 4c, down 4c, and; heavy 592c/kg, down 2c, down 5c. The national trade lamb indicator closed at 589c/kg, down 4 cents, and the heavy indicator finished at 592c/kg, down 3 cents.
The ESDI for mutton ended the week on 374c/kg, down 1 cents on Friday, but up 3 cents week-on-week. The national mutton indicator is on 370c/kg, down 1 cent.
Young ewe sales shine on AuctionsPlus
AuctionsPlus sheep and lamb numbers were steady at 33,743 last week, with growing numbers of store lambs. Market operations officer Anna Adams said there were some outstanding results for breeders.
Quality young breeders were the highlight of this week’s sheep sales; future breeders and ewes with lambs, she said.
Maiden 15-16 month-old February shorn Nyowee blood Merino ewes at Keith in South Australia sold from $150 to a top of $181. At Bogan Gate in central NSW Roseville Park blood 14-15 month-old maiden ewes, June 28 shorn, made $136.
Ms Adams said Merino ewes with lambs sold from $115.50 to a top of $169 for 430 6.5 year-old November shorn Merino ewes with 350 1-5 month-old White Suffolk cross lambs. A line of 112 3-7 year-old November shorn first cross with 124 2-4 month-old Poll Dorset lambs made $183 at Ararat.
Store lamb prices showed little variance on last week. The 24kg-25kg lwt lambs made $81-$86, 30-32kg lines sold from $86.50-$100.50, and 33kg-35kg drafts ranged from $93-$105. The heaviest lambs offered were large lines of mixed sex first cross lambs out of northern NSW with a future breeder component, Ms Adams said. The top line of 2160 weighing 42kg lwt, 3-4 months-old and unshorn at Spring Plains, NSW, sold for $134.50. Another 1400 mixed sex first cross lambs nearby at Bellata weighing 40kg made $121.50.
A line of 652 November shorn first cross ewe hoggets, 13-15 months-old and 53.2kg lwt sold for $175 at Wagga in NSW.
Cowra yards 72pc new season lambs
In New South Wales at the Cowra saleyards, the agents yarded 7600 lambs, 850 more than last week, and 670 sheep, 1370 fewer.
The NLRS said lamb quality was generally good, particularly for the heavy grades. Mainly trade and heavy weights were penned, including 5500 new season lambs. There were a few store lambs suitable for the restockers and all the buyers were operating except for one. Competition was a little softer, resulting in a cheaper market.
Light new season lambs sold to local restockers from $69-$104. Medium and heavy trade weight new seasons were $5-$6 cheaper and ranged from 590-602c/kg cwt. The fresh heavy trade weights sold from $140-$146. Heavy weights slipped $3-$6 and ranged from $145-$166, or 580-599c/kg. Medium and heavy trade weight old lambs were $3-$9 cheaper and averaged $127, or from 535-552c/kg. Heavy weight lambs were $4-$9 cheaper and more in places, ranging from 560-580c/kg. A few pens of extra heavy weight lambs sold from $165-$173.
Mutton numbers fell and quality was varied. Heavy first cross ewes were $8-$14 cheaper, ranging from 350-375c/kg cwt or to $112 for the 4 scores.
Griffith new season lambs drop $5-$9
In the Griffith saleyards on Friday, the agents yarded 9600 lambs, 1700 more than last week, or 2300 sheep, 400 less.
The NLRS said lamb quality was fair with a good number of well-finished lambs. Most were heavy and extra heavy weight lambs. There were 4500 new season lambs, with most fresh and well-finished. The usual buyers competed in a cheaper market.
New season lambs slipped $5-$9. Trade weights sold from $125-$155. Heavy lambs sold from $150-$167 and extra heavies received $165-$172. Carcase prices averaged 614c/kg cwt. Old light lambs sold from $105-$114. Trade weights were $4-$6 easier, with prices ranging from $114-$149. Heavy and extra heavy weight lambs were also $5-$7 easier. Heavy lambs sold from $149-$154 and extra heavies from $152-$178. Carcase prices ranged from 584-610c/kg.
The sheep were mostly Merinos and quality was mixed. Prices remained steady, with Merino ewes selling from $82-$135. Crossbreds sold from $88-$125 and Dorper ewes made $94-$115.
Shepparton lamb demand steady
In Victoria in the Shepparton saleyards on Friday, the agents yarded 655 lambs, 387 more than last week, and 500 sheep, 273 fewer.
The NLRS said lamb quality was mixed for the core field of late winter buyers.
Demand remained steady for lambs, with trade and heavy weights again making mostly 540-600c/kg cwt for the average to better quality. The light weight 2 score lambs sold from $64-$88, with light trade weight 2 and 3 scores making $85-$108. One small pen of new season lambs made $115. Medium weight 3 score trade lambs made $111-$134. The heavy 3 and 4 score lambs sold from $138-$148. A pen of extra heavy weights estimated at 27-28kg cwt sold for $166. The heavy weight 3 and 4 score hoggets made $90-$120, or around 390c/kg.
The sheep were mostly ewes that sold to more varied rates, with prices a little erratic for leaner conditioned grades but steadier for the better covered trade and heavy weights. The medium weight 2 and 3 score ewes sold from $65-$100 and the heavy 3 and 4 scores made $92-$122. They mainly ranged from 320-380c/kg cwt. Heavy weight rams sold from $48-$60 with a few Merinos made $74.
Sources: MLA, NLRS, AuctionsPlus.