Whether this is true or not, Benambra producers generally calve down later than the lower country, and this year the calves were in good to very good condition.
It was truly clear, by looking across the paddocks from the saleyard, that Benambra has had the better deal from any rain.
Similar to the rest of Tuesday, a large crowd was in attendance at Benambra, and also similar, was that many were looking or socializing.
The yarding of 1476-head saw 930 steers sell to $1310/head, and average $975.
Also selling well were the 546 heifers, that sold to $1095, and averaged $768.
Leading the sale were two pens of yearling steers that sold for $1290 and $1310; WJC Pendergast and D Betts were the successful sellers here.
A repeat buyer from South Gippsland purchased both pens, but went head on with another bullock fattener from the same district.
The top price for 2017 drop Hereford steers was achieved by two producers.
R&M Pendergast, and A&S Pendergast both accepted $1200 for their top steers.
Comments about which sale was better, Herefords or Angus, could well be settled by the average price.
Although there were many more Angus steers sold, the Benambra Herefords were $18 higher, at $975 per head.
There was less competition for live export and the north, however, results were still solid.
Some of the top weaned steers were purchased by a northern feedlot.
RG&AH Faithfull were seen enjoying the shade of one of the large trees, and were very pleased with their sale of 103 Hereford steers, from $780-$1170.
BJ&JB Carroll sold 36 Charolais-Angus steers from $1030-$1150, and a pen of 17 steers of similar breeding, sold by LH&SE Pendergast, made $1170.
Some of the buyers seek the traditional “Strawberry Roan” steers, but there were fewer of these offered in 2018.
Demand was strong for the younger calves, and most sold from $770-$920.
WA Pendergast & Sons sold 104 steers from $780-$950.
A small selection of yearling heifers sold to $1090, but it was a pen of Charolais-Angus heifers of B&J Carroll that topped the sale, making $1100.
Demand was strong for lighter weight heifers to background for future grain feeding with one South Australian buyer the bulk purchaser.
CE&DG Anderson sold 72 Hereford heifers, and was paid $780-$900, while K&J Pendergast topped the sale of Herefords, being paid $1000 for their top pen.
Just to continue the argument that Herefords may have sold better than Angus, the Benambra heifers averaged $2 more than the blacks.
Elders’ David Hill said the Hereford calf sale was excellent.
“Most of East Gippsland has been fairly dry right through from Christmas, and Benambra seemed to be able to hang on okay, but the last month of hot weather has really tested the cattle, so the breeding’s really had to shine,” Mr Hill said.
“We’re pretty satisfied with the result, thanks to repeat buyers, cattle have been able to make sufficient money.
“It’s good to see that ahead of the break, and going into winter time, buyers are willing to take the risk.”