While there has been some rain in Gippsland, rain does not grow grass overnight.
This was the reason behind a very large yarding of 2986 head, which included a broad range of breeds, both beef and dairy, and a large range of age and weight, at Pakenham.
Because of the strong competition for feeder steers and heifers, and a good offering of suitable cattle, prices were a good 10 cents a kilogram liveweight, or $40-$60 a head, dearer, for some cattle.
Adding to the competition were bullock and steer fatteners, after a very strong result at Leongatha's fat cattle sale the day before.
There was also competition from NSW for feeder cattle, and steers to run on grass.
All of this added up to a good result for many producers, although given the weaker demand for many of the lighter weight, and plainer condition cattle, prices were unchanged for many of these.
Top of the market was a pen of Angus bullocks, 587 kilograms, offered by G Murray, Nar Nar Goon, which sold for slaughter at $1650.
The best competition was for Angus steers weighing between 400-525kg, which saw some sales equal 300-320c/kg lwt.
N Griffin, Narracan, sold 26 steers to $1390, J Pierrehumbert, Buln Buln, sold 11 steers, 487kg, for $1490, and D Moore, Heath Hill, sold 18 Angus steers, 510kg, for $1590.
Many steers were purchased for grain feeding, but some sales stood out.
Troy Wrobel, Rail & Spur Pty Ltd, Allambee Reserve, sold a line of 73 yearling Angus steers, 382-442kg, from $1190-$1390. These were all over 300c/kg, and peaked at 326c/kg lwt.
J&D Camilleri, Catani, sold 20 Charolais-cross steers, 448kg, to a grain feeder, for $1385, which was a very good result.
Also selling Charolais cattle was D&E Perczyk, Hallston, whose Rangan and Rosedale blood steers sold for $1170.
Throughout the sale, there were many pens of well bred, younger steers, which sold mostly from $400-$700. Some of these were a producer's whole drop, as they were running out of water.
Demand for heifers for grain feeding created some dearer results too.
Numerous sales of yearling heifers, mostly Angus and Charolais, but including some Herefords, were purchased for grain feeding.
Elm Valley, Tarwin, sold 14 Angus heifers, 406kg, for $1150, and B&K Jan, Seaview, sold nine heifers, 385kg, for $1100.
Younger heifers were targeted by grain feeders too, mostly processors ensuring supply for later, and prices for well bred heifers sold mostly between $700-$900.
Young heifer prices were generally unchanged, ranging from $300-$650.
The drought has affected many Gippsland producers, sparing very few.
One Longford producer, well-known for selling prime Angus bullocks, sold 63 Angus heifers, that have had a calf; these were in store condition, weighing from 327-391kg, and sold between $580-$860.
S&A Crestani, Neerim, sold 10 Limousin cows with high quality Limousin calves at foot, 5-6 months, for $1745.