Cattle prices remained firm at Bairnsdale on Friday despite fewer pens of quality vendor-bred cattle on offer.
Agents yarded about 1800 cattle for the fortnightly store market, including 1500 steers and only a select offering of 260 heifers.
Feedlot activity was noticeably quieter compared to the earlier April sale, largely due to a decline in quality, while local and South Gippsland restockers were active throughout most of the sale.
Despite overall quality being back, there were several consignments of cattle which commanded impressive prices and sold to strong demand.
One of those drafts was 227 Angus steers offered by Macclesfield Pastoral Co, owned by Helen and Chris Nixon, with cattle both off their Cann River or Orbost properties.
The drafts were broken into two age categories, including 81 steers 12-13 months which weighed 358-420 kilograms and sold between $1870-$2030 a head or 522-483 cents a kilogram.
The second draft of Macclesfield Pastoral Co steers was aged eight-10 months and weighed between 248-342kg, selling for $1540-$1720 or 620-517c/kg.
The Nixons said the cattle in previous years had been carried through until 22 months, but with strong prices, plenty of demand and their country requiring a good drop of rain, it was an ideal time to sell.
Selling agent Sharp Fullgrabe auctioneer Brent Coster said the Nixon's draft was the stand out line.
"They sold to extremely strong demand and it's certainly a credit to the Nixons who presented such a good line of cattle," Mr Coster said.
Bill Wyndham & Co livestock manager Colin Jones said the quality of the yarding was "not as good as the outstanding yarding last sale".
"The feedlots weren't as strong as last time because we didn't have many cattle which suited that feeder weight and there was no northern competition like last sale," Mr Jones said.
"However, we had good local restocker competition and support from South Gippsland."
Mr Jones said buying confidence among local buyers was also less obvious compared to recent sales, mainly due to the region needing a good soaking of autumn rain.
"Our older cattle sold extremely well to bullock fatteners and then some of our lighter-weight weaners were making up to 600 cents a kilo," Mr Jones said.
Elders Bairnsdale livestock manager Morgan Davies local buyers were "gun shy" due to the drying conditions.
"We had a few bigger cattle which sold pretty well, Hereford cattle certainly made the money and black steers did look a shade cheaper but that was due to the quality," Mr Davies said.
Nutrien Bairnsdale livestock manager Brad Obst said feedlot competition on the heavier end of the cattle underpinned the sale.
"I thought it was solid enough but we didn't see the extremes we have seen in the lighter ends," Mr Obst said.
"The heavier end of our cattle above 450-500 kilos made 420-465c/kg and then there was some lighter cattle which made over 600c/kg but most cattle under 250 kilos were 570-600c/kg."
In the heavier end of the sale, Youngs Creek Pastoral sold nine steers, 528kg, for $2180 or 412c/kg.
CW Scott sold four steers, 608kg, for $2300 or 378c/kg.
Boulder Flat sold 13 steers, 548kg, for $2350 or 428c/kg and 10 steers, 492kg, for $2230 or 453c/kg.
SE Richardson Family Pty Ltd sold 14 steers, 530kg, for $2310 or 435c/kg.
In at the lighter section, Medowra Angus sold 24 steers, 363kg, for $1700 or 468c/kg, 22 steers, 338kg, for $1620 or 479c/kg and 11 steers, 260kg, for $1550 or 596c/kg.
S & K Sederlan sold 20 steers, 341kg, for $1800 or 527c/kg.
Riley Earthmoving sold 20 steers, 291kg, for $1600 or 549c/kg.
LH & JL Reed sold 23 steers, 306kg, for $1620 or 529c/kg, and 11 steers, 218kg, for $1500 or 533c/kg.
FR Peisley sold 11 steers, 281kg, for $1590 or 565c/kg.
Mekken Pty Ltd sold 20 steers, 245kg, for $1460 or 595c/kg.
R McMahon, Dargo, sold 11 steers, 307kg, for $1660 or 540c/kg.
There was only a select offering of heifers at Bairnsdale on Friday, including Glenshiel Pastoral Pty Ltd sold 16 heifers, 527kg, for $1910 or 362c/kg and 12 heifers, 497kg, for $1910 or 384c/kg.
Medowra Angus which sold 19 heifers, 331kg, for $1480 or 447c/kg, and 18 heifers, 308kg, for $1440 or 467c/kg.
BC & AJ Newcomen, Ensay, sold six unweighed heifers for $1500.
The estate of BK Sievers sold 10 heifers, 415kg, for $1650 or 397c/kg.
GL Baird sold 14 heifers, 330kg, for $1490 or 451c/kg.
K Bryan sold 13 heifers, 345kg, for $1600 or 463c/kg.