Anyone wanting quality bred beef weaners offering plenty of weight should make a bee-line for Hamilton during the 2019 Summer Beef weaner series.
Agents at the southwest selling centre report the growth and development of their 2018 autumn-drop calves as “par to recent years”.
They have also condensed their sales schedule into one full week – Monday to Friday – with nearby Casterton running three sales Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday.
Hamilton agent, Michael Kerr, Elders-Kerr & Co said the season to the south of Hamilton has finished much better than people thought.
“Back in September and October we struggled but it has turned with late rains”.
In regard to likely prices Mr Kerr doesn’t think there will be a boom like two years ago, even if it does rain bucket-loads in northern NSW. And if it doesn’t rain the Western District and the Southeast (SA) will have to shoulder the brunt of absorbing the majority of their calves as there will be few other alternatives.
Buyers he suggests will need about 280 to 300c/kg liveweight and more to purchase this year as there are plenty of local finishers needing to replace cattle they have traded at good money.
Mr Kerr suggests this will not be a year where a lot of speculative buying will take place as there is not the surplus grass in the country for this activity.
Throwing some cautious into his comments Mr Kerr said Victoria was yet to experience a week of super-hot weather that turns the grass quickly. “But if we do this could cause the cattle market to wobble as buyers tend to get nervous when these conditions unfold” he said.
Southern Grampians Livestock director, Heath Templeton agreed but said agents have had no indications from buyers as yet, especially from the north, as to what quantities of cattle might be required.
On current market tends he anticipates rates around the 300c/kg is likely for Angus steers and, on past years, parity prices for the well bred Hereford steers.
It could be a different outcome for heifers, Mr Templeton said. “If it rains extensively in the north heifers may become highly sought as future breeders but if it remains dry heifers could become cheaper as they channel through the trade markets”.
Bernie Grant LMB Linke said even the calves through the Red gum country to Hamilton’s north, should offer similar weights as past years.