Eastern states restocker demand saw many of the well-bred runs at the final Naracoorte weaner heifer sale on Friday leave the area and vendors receive close to steer rates for them.
On Thursday about 80 per cent of the nearly 5000-head steer yarding were bought by just four or five interstate buyers.
Many agents commented that it was one of the smallest crowds they had seen at the yards for such a big yarding.
It was another small crowd on Friday and again it only took a few commission buyers and agents to produce a tremendous result on the heifers as they filled orders from as far afield as northern NSW and Qld.
Their rates blew the locals away, taking about 70pc of the offering. AuctionsPlus were also strong.
The 3142 heifers averaged $2050.
Topping the market at $2440 was the first pen in Elders run.
The 24 April drops offered by PC Ross, Woolumbool, weighed 366kg and sold to Nampara Pastoral Company, Penola, to be joined and reoffered as PTIC females in 12 months time.
These EU Angus heifers were Pathfinder and Sterita Park bloodlines.
Two pens of 10-11 month old, EU eligible calves from PJ&JM Coote, Mocorco, Kalangadoo, also attracted plenty of interest from the rail.
Twenty four Angus-Simmental heifers weighing 413kg made $5.86/kg or $2420, while the red coated cattle of the same breeding, which were slightly heavier at 420kg made the same money on a dollars a head basis.
Commission buyer Jeremy Cummins bought a few pens for Nutrien Timboon in western Vic.
This included 33 Angus, 362kg, from Shady Grove Partners, Lucindale, for $2380 and another 31 Angus from HD&CJ Smith, Lucindale, for $2340.
BS&SL Skeer, Kepari, Penola, received $2310 for 22 February/March drop, EU eligible Angus weighing 341kg.
These sold to another active commission buyer Duncan Brown for Northern Livestock and Property, Moura, Qld, which bought nearly 400 head during the sale.
The Skeers' seconds which weighed 298.2kg made $2050.
The complete drop of 135, EU eligible, Angus from Moyhall Pastoral, Moyhall, which were only six to seven months old attracted strong competition. They all fetched more than $7/kg.
Two pens of the heaviest heifers at 323.12kg and 312.39kg, each made $2270.
NSW agent Davidson & Cameron, Gunnedah, was the buyer of all six pens from Moyhall Pastoral.
Also with a long trip ahead of them were 26 JB Angus bloods from Clovelly Pastoral Trust, Naracoorte.
The 339kg heifers were bought by Nutrien Toowoomba, Qld.
Heading the same way were 25 Granited Ridge bld Angus heifers from R&P Edge, Reedy Creek.
These made $7.20/kg, equating to $2408.
Another 16 head from the Edges made $6.50/kg. They weighed 334.40kg.
Thomas DeGaris & Clarkson director Darren Maney said prices were "fully firm to slightly dearer" in places on the "extreme rates" of the previous heifer sale.
"It used to be easy to sell the tops of their steers, the seconds you would struggle a bit and then you would hope like hell the next day on the heifers, now they are all basically making the same," he said.
"There has been northern demand but the heifer job has been the real surprise packet this year, in a lot of cases they are making within $50 of the steers."
He said it had been an exceptional weaner selling season at Naracoorte for both quality and numbers.
"Cattle producers will wake up one day and realise how good this was."
Nutrien auctioneer Brendan Fitzgerald agreed that prices were as firm as the previous Naracoorte heifer sale.
"It was equatable to steers and some heifers with breeding may have even made more, he said.
"People are just chasing heifers more as a safer option in the paddock."
Mr Fitzgerald said the majority of the heifers were heading north but local feedlotter, the Ogilvie Group were active on pens of coloured cattle which suited them on a c/kg basis.
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