A boost in feed from recent widespread rain has pushed grass fatteners back into the market with the result an upturn in prices and even caused some coloured cattle to be dearer than the blacks.
A total of 1540 cattle were yarded at Wodonga on Thursday where steers sold to a top of $1210 a head.
Elders Albury agent Harry Cozens said prices were dearer across most categories, with coloured cattle particularly strong.
Mr Cozens said the sale featured good runs of Hereford steers from Tarabah Livestock Co, Holbrook, who had sold several lines at the October sale, as well as from the Orange area.
"The Tarabah cattle were up to $100 to $150 dearer in places," he said.
"The heifers were a little brighter," he said.
Mr Cozens said heifers more than 320 kilograms were 10 cents a kilogram to 20c/kg dearer, however the lighter end was still hard going.
"Cows with calves were up to a couple of hundred dearer," he said.
Mr Cozens said significant rainfall in the last three to four weeks has meant there was a huge body of feed and with cattle prices having been lower it was more accessible for producers to buy without having the large outlay.
"There was a good field of buyers from a large region and strong local support," he said.
"The grass fatteners were stepping in and buying weight. They were dominating the coloured cattle which in places were dearer than the blacks."
Light steers weighing less than 280kg typically sold for $340 to $800 while steers in the 280kg to 400kg weight range mostly made $690 to $1020.
Heavy steers weighing more than 400kg sold for $650 to $1210.
Light heifers weighing less than 280kg mostly made $275 to $545 while heifers weighing between 280kg and 400kg typically sold for $340 to $825 and heavy heifers more than 400kg made $500 to $940.
Cows with calves sold for $780 to $1490.
Pregnancy-tested-in-calf heifers made $1150 to $1260 and PTIC cows sold for $1090.
A feature of the sale was runs of Hereford steers with Gunyah blood, from Steve and Ellie Wilson, Greenbank, Forest Reefs, including 13 weighing 462kg sold for $1015.
The Wilsons also sold 23 Hereford steers, 411kg, for $955 and another 23 weighing 364kg for $910.
Another feature was a run of Hereford steers, with Wirruna blood, from Michael and Anna Coughlan, Tarabah Livestock Company, Mt Narra Narra Station, Holbrook, including 77 weighing 290kg sold for $700.
The second pen of 76 Hereford steers, 266kg, made $600.
Yambla Station Partnership, Table Top, sold 14 Angus steers, 505kg, for $1210.
James and Sarah Nicholson, Tallangatta Valley, sold 14 Angus-cross steers, 438kg, for $1030.
John Ley, Jarvis Creek, sold 20 Angus steers, 392kg, for $910 and another 18 Angus steers, 377kg, for $810.
Ian and Jill Coghlan, Eurimbla, Gerogery, sold a total of 43 Red Poll steers, including 17 12 to 14 month-old steers, 432kg, for $860.
Mr Coghlan said they sold steers at the same time last year but with firmer feed this year these steers were heavier with an average of 420kg compared to 390kg last year.
He said they had finished well.
Mrs Coghlan said they were carrying just as much stock this year and were well set up with feed going forward.
In the heifers John Silins, Yackandandah, sold a single Angus heifer, 515kg, with Witherswood blood, for $940, and another 15 Angus heifers, 389kg, for $825.
Bunroy Station, Bunroy, sold six Charolais heifers, 415kg, for $770 and PE and GI Jarrick, Jindera, sold 17 Shorthorn heifers, 392kg, with Sprys blood, for $715.
Buyers were from including Wodonga, Corowa, Finley and Benalla.
The sale was conducted by Elders and Paull and Scollard Nutrien Ag Solutions.
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.