Farm Tender

Heavy Lambs $5-$10 dearer at Bendigo

Yarding - 16,000 (+5500)
Lambs - 12,000 (+4000)
Sheep - 4000 (+1500)

There was a lift in numbers to 12,000 head, 4,000 more than a week ago. Another classic winter yarding, with some very good grain assisted lambs penned alongside plainer types showing the effects of the cold and wet. The regular buying group operated, and once again it was domestic processors who were the keenest for numbers. Bidding was more consistent than last Monday resulting in dearer averages of $5 to $10/head over the main trade and heavy categories. Some domestic buyers did step up into bigger weighted lambs, with 20 to 28kg stock gaining the best support. In contrast, there was little price improvement for any super-sized export lambs, with the sale recording a top of $279/head for a pen of 38kg crossbreds.

Heavy export lambs made from $249 to a top of $279/head, and some stronger sales of 30 to 32kg lambs in this category helped carry the estimated carcase average to nearly 800c/kg cwt. Heavy crossbred lambs weighing 26 to 30kg made from $230 to $266, while the 24 to 26kg pens topped at $238/head, averaging from 850c to 900c/kg cwt. The highlight of the sale was any nicely finished domestic lambs, with the best run of 22 to 24kg crossbreds selling from $210 to $231, and the pick of the 20 to 22kg pens making a top of $225/head. These quality processing lambs were estimated to average from 920c to 950c/kg cwt. Plainer types of the same size in rougher skins or penned in small numbers could still be bought below 900c/kg cwt. Merino lambs were dearer and most of the lightweight stock under 18kg were of this breed.

There was a better selection of sheep compared to last Monday, although overall numbers remained low at 4,000 head. The trend from the lamb sale followed through, with stock under 30kg recording the best gains. There was little change to extra large crossbred ewes which sold from $200 to $255/head. Price improvements were recorded for light and trade sheep with the best runs costing processors more than700c/kg cwt. Lines of young Merino wethers sold particularly well.

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