A LARGE consignment of Yancowinna Angus cattle from Cape Paterson set the tone for last week's strong store sale at Leongatha.
More than 400 head of cattle were offloaded by Yancowinna principal Dennis Ginn, as well-bred steers and top-end heifers which fetched consistent prices compared to previous sales.
SEJ Livestock auctioneer James Kyle said the sale marked a bittersweet occasion for the Yancowinna brand and Mr Ginn's association with Angus cattle after his health had deteriorated recently.
"After getting out of the cows and calves in the stud last year, Dennis decided to go into a run of steers and purchased a lot of cattle out of here and the Pakenham saleyards and unfortunately he hasn't got a fit bill of health at the moment so we've had to lease out the property and all those steers have had to be sold," Mr Kyle said.
"Dennis had great hopes of fattening them and they probably wouldn't have come back through the store pens but unfortunately we had to make the hard decision to do that and I think we probably did it at the right time of the year ... and it paid off."
A yarding of 415 Yancowinna cattle, including a top pen of 560-kilogram steers which fetched $1860 a head, added to the total of 2700 head which passed through the market at Leongatha.
A few hundred head of NSW cattle sold well as heavier steers made more than 300 cents a kilogram, in some cases making up to 340c/kg.
Top-end heifers sold between 285-310c/kg, however, secondary cattle were challenging to offload.
Alex Scott & Staff livestock auctioneer Dane Perczyk said the market was was consistent with the previous store sale a fortnight ago.
"With the spring though only around the corner, those secondary cattle are starting to become a little bit easier to sell, but it's still tough enough," Mr Perczyk said.
"The heifer job was actually not too bad considering half the crowd drops off when the heifers start, but there was good competition for the heifers.
"We had well-bred Angus heifers, 280kg, that were making $700 to $800 in that 250-260c/kg range."
Elders Leongatha branch manager Rohan McCrae described it as a "solid sale".
"The cattle were getting to either side of their value, it was a little bit patchy but the cattle sold okay," he said.
"The well-bred steers were making up to 340, as long as they had a bit of weight, but the cross-bred are sub $3 to $2.60.
"You would expect this sale would be more buoyant but I think it's just the fact there's a lot of cattle, not just here but at every selling centre ... which is uncommon for this time of year."
N Smith, Pound Creek, sold a pen of 16 steers, 380kg, for $1170 of 307c/kg.
M Spencer, Mirboo North, sold a pen of eight steers, 350kg, for $950 or 280c/kg.
G and H Gray, Boisdale, sold a pen of 12 steers, 338kg, for $1050 or 310c/kg.
B and C Cochrane, Bega, NSW, sold 12 steers for $450.
JJ and Gl Green, Bemboka, NSW, sold a pen of 17 steers for $890.
In the heifers, Melalencos Angus, Dalyston, sold 17 heifers, 415kg, for $1100.
Sandy Camp sold 13, 260kg, for $540 or 207c/kg.
C and L Kennedy, Millingandi, NSW, sold a pen of 13 heifers for $660.