DESPITE the northwest grain-harvest being all but finished some excellent buying opportunities went begging at Wycheproof store sheep sale on Friday.
Agents said that on the day prices were easier than the previous sale held at the northwest saleyards one week earlier as 2013-drop crossbred young ewes, joined, made to $148 a head and joinable-age 2014-drop ewe lambs, made to $120.
Paddy O'Reilly, Landmark said that pens of unjoined ewes made close to their money.
"It was a reasonable result for this class considering the local conditions", Mr O'Reilly said.
Grain-growers remain fairly pessimistic about their post-harvest grazing capabilities he said.
"Their stubbles are thin and they fear they will provide limited cover and a lasting feed resource through the heat of summer and into autumn when the next rains to benefit would be expected".
And while opportunities for joined breeding ewes appeared inviting Mr O'Reilly these were much longer term proportions than fattening lambs and few croppers were committed to taking that extended risk.
Four pens of joined crossbred breeding ewes, ranging in age from 1.5 to 5.5 year-old, opened the sale selling from $96 to $148 a head.
Offered by I Vivian these Gudair-vaccinated and mulesed lines, which were all depastured to White Suffolk rams in early November, were sold to enquiry spread from Kilmore and Bordertown, SA.
Only a small selection of quality crossbred lines were included in the 5000 head yarding.
Several attractive and largish lines of heavier wool-cutting ewes were included however, with the best prices at $133 a head being a yard of 13-drop The Yanco/Willandra-blood Merino young ewes that were not station-mated.
These October-shorn ewes were sold by Kilconon Pastoral, Euroa to Nhill agency DMD while a second-draft of the same went to Kyneton priced at $120.
W&M Butcher, Elmsleigh, Booroorban, NSW offered a large upstanding line of 750 four year-old Collinsville-blood ewes depastured to Poll Dorset rams in mid-November.
This September-shorn line was sold over two drafts at $128 and $122 a head to Gary Hardwick's Sutton Grange Pastoral of Metcalfe while an outstanding line of 400 3.5 year-old SAMM ewes, April shorn and depastured to White Suffolk rams in mid-October, made $120 and $122.
These were offered by Yarraberb Estate Raywood and sold in its entirety to Landmark Swan Hill for Ian Gallagher of Speewa Island.
Other pens of middle aged ewes, mostly joined (some unjoined), made $90-$120.
A limited selection of wethers once again met good demand with a yard of 14-drop Charinga-blood lambs, unshorn, best priced at $71.
These were carded and sold account an unnamed breeder while C&J Guthrie of Donald sold an October-shorn line of Wallaloo Park-blood wether lambs at $69.
Two pens of Winjallok-blood two year-old wethers November-shorn made $66 and $67 for R&D Holden of Taradale.