Very little rain has left Sale and surrounding districts in the full grip of drought, and this was reflected in the poor quality yarding, Friday.
Agents offered a slightly smaller yarding than drawn for, selling 835 head. Most of the cattle were in plain store condition, and ranged from heavier yearlings, down to some very plain, lightweight calves.
A good sign of the grip of the drought could be seen in the penning of cows and calves, joined cows, and a few pens of empty cows.
Yearling steers sold between $985 to $1200, but these were mostly in small numbers.
LA Morgan sold 34 steers, selling to $1050, with 12 Charolais cross steers, 408 kilograms liveweight, making $1020. These steers sold to a processor for grain feeding.
Most of the steers were too light, and did not suit for grain feeding.
One of the better sales of yearling steers, was the 15 Angus steers of MD Lee, which weighed just 332kgs. These sold for $990.
Most of the younger steers sold between $450 and $760, and considering their weight and condition, these prices were fairly good.
The competition came mostly from South Gippsland, but now there has been some rain further east, several Bairnsdale agents were purchasing a variety of cattle.
Because it is so dry, and water and grass is scarce, Kilbirnie Partners sold 28 steer calves in very plain condition. Given their very light weight, $310 to $330 was a fair result.
A small number of fat yearling heifers sold to processors from $1090 to $1200, and Limousin heifers were purchased for grain feeding for $910 and $920.
Well bred Angus heifers sold to reasonable demand. B Frawley sold 10 Angus heifers, 307kgs, for $840, but most made from $350 to $610.
Very small calves sold from $250 to $380, which again, were very good sales for their weight.
This yarding included plenty of dairy and dairy cross steers and heifers, and the going was very tough for these.
The best Friesian steers made $715 for 340kgs, while some younger steers made form $400 to $480.
It was time to sell off whatever could be spared, and A&J Girvan sold 15 Angus cows with calves at foot, by Leawood Angus bulls, to five months of age. These outfits were in fair condition and sold from $1380 to $1400.
A&R Bowman sold 28 Angus cows, PTIC to calve, June July, to Pinora bulls. Selling for $940 came after some strong bidding.
Over 50 cows were sold that had been Pregnancy Tested Empty. These made from $500 to $770, with a few small heifers from $250 to $450 per head.