PRICES increased at this month's Central Tablelands Livestock Exchange store cattle sale.
Buyers from Victoria and Bombala were active in the market, both restockers and agents looking for feeder cattle.
Numbers increased on last month - to about 2500 in total - and quality was a lot plainer.
There were a few weaners but more cattle aged from 12 to 16 months.
There were a few cow and calf units.
The market sold to a dearer trend with strong competition coming from Victorian buyers.
The market lifted $30 to $50 head on heavier cattle, while light plain weaners were much stronger on quality.
Weaner steers up to 200 kilograms sold to $740/head.
Medium weights made from $560 to $955/head or 290c to 320c/kg live weight.
Medium weight heifers sold from $490 to $760/head or 240c to 270c/kg lwt on average.
Heavy yearling steers sold from $990 to $1420/head or 300c to 330c/kg lwt.
The heavy heifers made from $850 to $1030/head.
PTIC heifers reached $1100 and cows made to $1240/head.
Cow and calf units started at $1040 and sold to $1725 for Shorthorn cows with an Angus cross calf at foot.
One restocker from Docker, in Victoria's King Valley, Malcom Carson, bought 36 steers and 29 heifers.
"I was the losing bidder on a pen of steers, I dropped out at $740, but then saw the heifers, which were very light, and thought I'd hedge my bets a bit," he said.
"It's sort of a three-way hedge, I might sell them joined, ready to join or I might calve them."
He said he bought the heifers in very light condition - he paid $570 and they weighed an average 178 kilograms.
Mr Carson said at the moment he had plenty of grass and hay ready to bale, but he still wasnn't sure if he'd done the right thing.
"It's always a gamble isn't it?"
He said he'd been looking at sales across NSW and the ACT, including Yass and Braidwood, and reckoned he might have been better to keep bidding at Carcoar when he saw prices from Yea, Victoria, a sale on the same day.
Mr Carson regularly travels to Carcoar seeking cattle in lighter condition that what they're generally offered in Victoria.
"In Victoria you're buying condition and the cattle are in good nick, but when I buy something I like to seen improvement right from the get go."
He said he thought Friday's sale got progessively more expensive, a thought echoed by agents, buyers and sellers alike.