BACKGROUNDERS were the strength of the Naracoorte Combined Agents’ monthly store cattle sale on Thursday last week.
The 957-head yarding defied the 20 cents a kilogram to 30c/kg drop in the prime market in the past fortnight, with agents quoting the market as comparable to Hamilton, Vic, and Casterton, Vic, sales held on the same day.
Most heavy steers made $3.60/kg, but lighter steers weighing less than 300kg still made up to $4.40/kg.
There was a big price gap back to heifers, with most making $3.50-$3.70/kg.
The annual draft from Nick Lock, Nurrungah Cattle Co, Cadgee, drew spirited bidding.
The seven to eight-month-old Angus weaners had tremendous weight for age with the top pen weighing 397kg. These sold for $1500 to Elders Naracoorte’s Tom Dennis for a Millicent client, who bought 94 head in the sale, largely in the 320-350kg range.
In total, Nurrungah sold 132 steers averaging $1378.
The heaviest of Nurrungah’s heifers were sold a month ago to Woodwards but the 30 offered av $971.
Pinkerton Palm Hamlyn & Steen agent Josh Manser said the sale was beyond expectations, buoyed by a volume buyer who was replacing bullocks, which sold for “exceptional money” in the past month.
“He had the money and could see the breeding in the calves,” he said.
“It is evident going forward into the weaner sales, the calves weighing less than 320kg are not going to be there, because of the exceptional season. Those buying on a dollars a head per animal to put out are not going to have huge numbers to pick from.”
Top price steer honours of $1685 was for 14 older steers from Rosebank Pastoral.
The 465kg steers were among 76 head bought by Thomas Foods International.
Munga Developments, Frances, topped at $1450, av $1380, for its well-bred draft of 71 spring 2015-drop Angus. Also making $1450 were 13 steers, 393kg, from Struan Research.
The best coloured cattle were 33 Red Angus-Gelbvieh-Simmental composites from Ingham Contracting, Lucindale, which made $1320 and $1305. They weighed 330-350kg.
European Union-accredited heifers from AG Go Organics, Old Fairview, Lucindale, topped the category. TFI snapped up the 487kg pregnancy-tested empty heifers for $1635.
Nareen Station, Nareen, Vic, sold 40 EU Hereford heifers from $3.52-$3.70/kg.
Landmark’s Richard Miller was the sale’s biggest buyer, with 170 steers and heifers for a Mid North client.
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