Local records fell at Edenhope's annual Australian Wool Network-run Edenhope sheep sale, which was held at a new facility to the west of the town.
The sale grossed $3.15 million, and included 4108 young ewes which averaged $394 a head, and 6100 ewe lambs, av $265.
Ewes made a top of $480 and averaged $394, while ewe lambs topped at $364 to av $265.
One-and-half-year-old ewes reached a record high for Edenhope of $480, a jump of $54/hd on last year's sale high, paid to the Stewart family's Wimmera Downs, Greens Creek.
Ian Kerr at Winnap, made the record purchased, through agent O'Connor and Graney, for 137 May/June 2020-drop, October shorn and Gudair-vaccinated.
Equal sale toppers were Mark and Janine Hancock, Miga Lake, whose first line of 189 May/June 2020 drop ewes sold for $480 to Ian and Sarah James, Casterton, through agent LMB Linke, while a lighter second line of 60 ewes made $354, for a draft average of $417/hd.
In all, AWN branch manager David Hanel, said the 1.5 year-old October-shorn ewes sold from $300-$480, while one year-old ewes fetched from $245-$410.
He said heavier ewe lambs, above 50 kilograms, sold from $300-$364 and lighter lines for $160-$290.
Despite wet and cold conditions slowing growth rates of ewe lambs, Mr Hanel said the sale had produced record prices for the two categories in what had been a tough season, with av weights back 5-10kg on last year.
"We are up against it of alte with the shift to composities down suth, which is detracting a bit from first-cross breeders but those that are still in it, are supporting our breeders," he said.
"We had our usual local Wimemra and South Western grazires that have always supported the sale strongly for many years."
The sale started with the first line of Wimmera Downs' 149 April/May 2020-drop ewes, which made $446, paid by a Southern Grampians Livestock (SGL) client.
Other top 1.5 year-old prices included $450 for J.T.B & R.E Heard's 264 June/July 2020 drop August shorn ewes. The Heard family also sold another 254 June/July 2020-drop ewes for $442 to SGL.
Wimmera Downs also sold 212 May/June-2020 drop ewes for $438, 282 April/May 2020 drop ewes for $436, 146 May/June 2020 drop ewes for $422, and 115 May/June 2020-drop ewes for $400.
The top ewe lamb price of $364 was paid by an Elders client for Wimmera Downs' vendor bred,153 April/May 2021 drop lambs.
Continuing a 15 year tradition, Westwood, Edenhope, was paid $338 for 287 May/June 2021 drop ewes, by long-term client, Kilmorey Partnership, Warrnambool, through Nutrien.
Wimmer Downs also offered 161 April/May 2021 drop ewe lambs that made $326.
Mark Chadwick, Stobo Farms, Miga Lake, won the inaugural John McDonald Memorial award for the best presented pen of ewe lambs at Edenhope, sashed to 146 April/May 2021-drop October shorn ewe lambs, which made $320/hd.
Mr Hanel said his company had built new facilities on Jennings Road, 3km west of the town, in response to a the former Powers Creek Road yards being unavailable for use for Edenhope's annual two sheep sales, held in consecutive weeks in November.
The new facility, built on land leased from local farmer Bruce Ryan, has the capacity to hold 11,000 head - slightly more than the old yards.
Mr Hanel said feedback regarding the new yards had been positive.
"It is a pretty simple set up, just up and back, but it seemed to work really well," he said.
"The proof is in the pudding. The prices were certainly very good, with some good value for buyers in some of the lamb component, with some of the lambs a little smaller than usual due to the late autumn break and the cold and wet winter."
Land owner Bruce Ryan said he was pleased to see the facility constructed.
"It is good to see such a strong sale locally," Mr Ryan said.
Interestingly, Mr Hanel said the new site marked the third home for the Edenhope sale in around six or seven years.
"The long-term, traditional saleyards were out on the Harrow Road until Rodwells build their yards on the Powers Creek Road, where the sales have been for the last six or seven years," Mr Hanel said.
"We've moved the sale out here and hopefully this can become the long-term home of the Edenhope first-cross sales.
This week around 5000 first cross wethers and wether lambs will go under the hammer at the saleyards.