A large dose of competition fueled by rain and shortages of suitable cattle saw the annual Mortlake weaner sale far exceed expectations.
The yarding of 3745 steers and heifers by the associated agents at the Western Victorian Livestock Exchange attracted the biggest crowd ever seen at the centre.
The sale was conducted in conjunction with AuctionsPlus, with 156 registered buyers placing just under 300 bids.
Mortlake Stock Agents' Association president Matt Baxter said weaner steers either side of 400 kilograms made between 460-490 cents a kilogram, or $1690-$1920 a head.
Lighter steers made 480-540c/kg or $1650-$1755.
Nutrien auctioneer Josh McDonald said the sale was "terrific across the board".
"It was beyond all expectations; it started strong and held that throughout," Mr McDonald said.
Good lines of black Angus breeder heifers were in high demand making between 480-530c/kg or $1535-$1800.
Mr Baxter said lightweight heifers remained firm throughout the sale and proved dearer than the weaner steers in some cases as they made to a top of 534c/kg and $1736.
Bruce Redpath, Elders, Mortlake, said calves made 20-30c/kg more than expected.
Mr Redpath said the competition from the north including Queensland and northern NSW was "very strong".
Moyne Falls presented a large consignment of Angus weaner cattle with a total of 602 head which made to a top of $1634 for the steers or 628c/kg for the lightest pens.
The heifer portion sold to $1390 on weights of around 200kg.
Boiardo Pastoral also presented a large offering of 140 Angus heifers which made to a top of $1658 or 508c/kg.
Bob Haworth and Vicki Jones, Correlup, Mortlake, showcased 143 Angus weaner cattle with the steers making top price of $1880 of 464c/kg for a pen of 30 weighing 405kg.
The second run comprised 38 at 370kg that made 482c/kg or $1783 while the third cut of 25 weighed 332kg and sold for 509c/kg or $1690.
The heifer portion of the Correlup draft saw a pen 25 at 328kg making top price of $1512 or 460c/kg.
Sambell Pastoral sold a line of 42 steers, European Union accredited, and certified organic, that weighed 364kg and sold for 536c/kg or $1918.
JC, HM & PJ Dumesny, Port Fairy, had a line of steers that included 22 at 395kg that made 470c/kg or $1860.
A second draft of 37 at 327kg made 515c/kg and a third of 33 at 267kg made 536c/kg.
The consignment of JB Howard included a draft of 49 that weighed 374kg and sold for 482c/kg or $1720.
A second pen of 28 at 330kg sold for 510c/kg or $1685.
A consignment came forward from Jingella that included April/May-drop steers with 28 weighing 383kg making $1854 or 484c/kg, with a second line of 43 at 337kg making $1783 or 508c/kg.
The steers topped at 535c/kg for a pen of nine that weighed 257kg.
The heifer portion included a pen of 22 at 288kg that made 480c/kg or $1382.
A pen of nine heifers, 235kg, made 500c/kg or $1177.