Backgrounding and feedlot orders continued to underpin the southern weaner sales series at Casterton on Tuesday as an estimated 90 per cent of the yarding went north to NSW buyers.
Promising cattle prices were again prominent on the second day of sales in western Victoria as agents yarded 2800 cattle for the Angus and Angus/Hereford-cross steer weaner market.
It was the first of three weaner sales at Casterton this week, as another sale kicked off at Hamilton at noon on Tuesday.
The western Victorian auctions are part of the 15 sales set to take place across Victoria and South Australia this week after eight sales were held across the two states last week.
At Casterton on Tuesday, light cattle under 300 kilograms sold well beyond 800 cents a kilogram, while the bulk of the yarding sold for more than 600c/kg.
- Hamilton weaners pass 800c/kg as second week of weaner sales start
- Wangaratta light Angus calves hit 943c/kg in feature weaner sale
- Mortlake heifers sell to a whopping at $4360
Only a handful of pens at the iconic sale were bought by local western Victoria restockers, as northern NSW and Qld demand significantly outweighed the once-strong support from south-east South Australia.
Nutrien Casterton livestock manager Rick Smith said competition by buyers in person and online via AuctionsPlus helped maintain strong competition across all weight categories at the sale.
"However, at times if cattle weren't weaned or not all the boxes were ticked, there were a few holes and the bidding was erratic at times," he said.
"Light cattle sold for more than 800c/kg, the mid-range calves were selling around 700c/kg and the heavier, first draft of steers was anywhere from 620-660c/kg."
Mr Smith said demand by South Gippsland and SA restockers also helped maintain buoyant market rates.
"The lighter the cattle got, the further north they went," he said.
"Ninety per cent of the yarding here today is going into NSW presumably for backgrounding and we haven't seen that in the past.
"Typically speaking, the green triangle and south-east of South Australia have been very strong but apart from one buyer here today, they were mostly absent."
The better-bred and weaned lead drafts of the sale were aged nine to 10 months and sold from 630-640c/kg on average, while the lighter drafts from 320-340kg sold from 680-720c/kg.
Cattle weighing below 300kg ranged from 740-800c/kg, and peaked at 850c/kg late in the sale.
The sale started with a pen of 51 Angus steers consigned by Ulonga, which offered 100 calves in total, March/April 2021-drop, 390kg, which made 634c/kg or $2472 a head.
Ulonga also sold 42 Angus steers, 350kg, for 691c/kg or $2377 and 24 steers, 305kg, for 744c/kg.
Account Baroona sold a draft of 150 black calves, February/March 2021-drop, including a pen of 73 steers, 371kg, for 653c/kg and 68 Angus steers 328kg, for 712c/kg or $2335.
Paul O'Brien, Sunnyside, Dunrobin, sold 106 Angus steers, nine and 10 months, including 65 Angus steers, 369kg, for 656c/kg or $2420 and 20 Angus steers, 324kg, for 626c/kg or $2300.
Mr O'Brien said his draft sold for $600 a head more on average compared to his 2020-drop draft last year, despite his 2021-drop this year weighing about 15kg less after a tough winter.
Marlan sold about 90 Angus calves including 29 Angus steers, 376kg, for 653c/kg or $2455.
The Gums, Casterton, sold 150 steers, nine and 10 months, including 47 Angus steers, 350kg, for 690c/kg or $2415 and 32 steers, 232kg, for 830c/kg or $1925.
The O'Connell family, Toora Downs, Wando Vale, sold 68 Angus steers, nine and 10 months, including 47 steers, 373kg, for 658c/kg or $2454.
Forest View, Sandford, sold 89 Angus steers, nine and 10 months, including 49 Angus steers, 380kg, for 648c/kg or $2462.
Hamish and Leonie McNicol, Meteranvale, Dunrobin, sold 90 Angus and Black Baldy steers, nine and 10 months, including 25 Angus steers, 339kg, for 678c/kg or $2298, 24 steers, 310kg, for 734c/kg or $2275 and 23 steers, 280kg, for 762c/kg or $2133.
The McNicols also sold 18 steers, 249kg, for 806c/kg or $2006 to Elders Tamworth, NSW.
Wyandra sold 150 Angus steers including a pen of 71 steers, 341kg, for 698c/kg or $2380.
Brett and Sarah Evans, Wondooma, Tarrenlea, sold 62 Angus steers, nine and 10 months, including 23 Angus steers, 329kg, for 710c/kg or $2335 and 23 steers, 372kg, for 650c/kg or $2418.
Batalon sold 60 calves including 26 Angus steers, 373kg, for 646c/kg or $2409.
Woodlands sold 50 steers including 30 Angus weaners, 380kg, for 624c/kg or $2409.
Lindisfarne sold 40 steers including 21 Angus, 388kg, for 646c/kg or $2506 and 12 steers, 260kg, for 784c/kg or $2038.
Gunadoo sold 16 Angus steers, 393kg, for 620c/kg or $2436.
Lyndon Lea sold 23 Angus steers, 371kg, for 628c/kg or $2329.
Westral, Warrock, sold 20 Angus steers, 388kg, for 636c/kg or $2467.
Auto Farm sold 16 Angus steers, 352kg, for 668c/kg or $2351 and 14 steers, 321kg, for 714c/kg or $2291.
Willbrook Five sold 18 steers, 386kg, for 640c/kg or $2470 and 15 steers, 324kg, for 700c/kg or $2268.
Mullagh sold 23 Angus steers, 365kg, for 658c/kg or $2401 and 25 steers, 345kg, for 680c/kg or $2346.
Cloverdale sold 13 Angus steers, 373kg, for 630c/kg or $2349.
Aigle sold 22 Angus steers, 379kg, for 628c/kg or $2380.
Shady Glen sold 12 Angus steers, 397kg, for 600c/kg or $2382.
Hillview sold 17 Angus steers, 370kg, for 600c/kg or $2382.
Pinelodge sold 25 Angus steers, 376kg, for 640c/kg or $2406.
Majors Creek sold 15 Angus steers, 371kg, for 624c/kg or $2315 and seven steers, 273kg, for 772c/kg.
Glencairn sold 17 steers, 339kg, for 696c/kg or $2359 and 22 steers, 286kg, for 762c/kg or $2179.
Erin Valley sold 15 steers, 379kg, for 630c/kg or $2387 and nine steers, 330kg, for 688c/kg or $2270.
Brecon sold 10 steers, 356kg, for 640c/kg or $2278, nine steers, 314kg, for 690c/kg or $2166, another nine steers, 237kg, for 832c/kg and four steers, 183c/kg, for 850c/kg or $1555.
Mary Vale sold 25 steers, 345kg, for 682c/kg or $2352.
Casterview sold 18 Angus steers, 329kg, for 722c/kg or $2375.
Brimbi sold 15 steers, 319kg, for 710c/kg or $2264.
Riverdale, Digby, sold 25 steers, 355kg, for 690c/kg or $2311 and 28 steers, 302kg, for 734c/kg or $2277.