Angus steers made $1010 at the Tamworth Livestock Selling Agents Association store sale in a market described by agents and industry observers that was at least $150 to more than $200 up on the sale held two weeks ago.
Tamworth agents penned an extra 465 head to offer 1434 cattle, and overall, it was a good quality offering of young cattle, which provided the bulk of the yarding. There were about 90 cows and calves and pregnancy-tested-in-calf (PTIC) cows.
There were much dearer trends for weaner steers, some sales up to $200/head better, and heifers sold to considerably dearer trends of $80 to $195/head.
Most of the cattle were drawn from Coonamble, Ebor, Brewarrina, Willow Tree, Walcha, Manilla and Scone districts.
The lead weaner steers $590 to $1010/head, and the following drafts $210 to $580/head.
Heifer weaners were priced between $480 to $735, while the second drafts were $200 to $460/head. A good draft of yearling steers sold $600 to $995/head and yearling heifers to $600/head.
Heifers on their first calf sold between $890 and $1020 a unit, with sales of older cows and calves costing $720 to $1210/unit. A very good draft of one-brand, PTIC Angus cows sold from $1420 to $1460/head.
The increased prices were lubricated by good rainfalls around the Northwest, in southwest Queensland and on the Dorrigo Plateau. It also opened order books as producers were keen to take advantage of a market that had been flat due to the impact of and constant discussion about the imminent drought.
Tamworth stock agent Chris Paterson, Chris Paterson Stock & Station Agents, acted on behalf of a client who wished to remain anonymous and who had "plenty of feed" to buy the top-priced pen of 14 Angus steers offered by Tyringham Station, Ebor.
Mr Paterson said rain was the key to boosting flagging confidence and certainly boosted the returns of those who yarded cattle at the sale.
"Rain is the main ingredient to improve the market. We need the restockers back in (the market)," Mr Paterson said. "This rain will bring confidence."
Mr Paterson bought two pens of 15 Angus steers offered by the Blake family's Brookvale Grazing for $995.
Rob Senior and family, Killarney Brewarrina, were cleaning up the tail of their cattle after selling the property and made $545 for a pen of six Angus steers, while a pen of 13 lighter Angus steers made $350.
Also bidding up was Tim Bayliss, Ray White, Dorrigo, who said the producers on the Dorrigo plateau have significantly been heartened by recent falls of 100 mm to 120mm. At the same time, around the edge of the district, there had been measurements of 40mm to 50mm.
He said the ryegrass components of local pastures were holding one and would be boosted by the falls, but it was too early and not "hot enough" for any movement in the Kikuyu pastures.
"These steers will be grown out on the grass job before going into feedlots," Mr Bayliss said.
"The market today is up $150 to $200 up, and I wanted a heap, but I might not have much luck," he added.
Cody Scott, TopX, Goondiwindi, Queensland, was also at Tamworth with plenty of orders to buy. Mr Scott said falls between 40mm and 110mm west of the town had inspired producers to "get into the market before it gets too dear".
He said those who'd received good falls were planting forage crops to capitalise on the moisture and were buying cattle "on the punt" to make the most of the hoped-for growth.
Bradley Sadler, Nutrien Ag Solutions, Tamworth put together a "deck" of steers for the Taroom, Queensland district and said. At the same time, the rain and growth had not significantly impacted that area of Queensland; producers were jockeying to ensure they would get a good start if and when it did arrive.
Denison Partnership Coonamble were volume vendors with 200 mixed-sex weaners, sired by Outwest Angus bulls, on offer. The Angus and Angus-cross steers and heifers were aged between seven and nine months and four to five months, with buyers bidding accordingly. The top-priced pen of 14 steers returned $800, while another pen of 20 older steers made $570. A pen of 26 lighter steers went for $460, while two small pens of very light, young steers made $330 and $340 a head.
Also selling well was a draft of steers offered by David, Louise and Mark Carlon, Nalorac Pastoral, Lyndhurst, Armidale. A pen of 11 European Union-accredited steers made $8910, while a pen of 14 slightly lighter steers made $670. Another pen of 10 steers from the same vendor went for $610. Ray White Dorrigo was an active buyer of the Nalorac steers.
In the heifer pens, Scott Mayne, Wallamore sold off heifers he'd planned to join to Wagyu bulls. A pen of 25 made $490, as did another pen of 16. In the lighter end of the draft, 25 Angus heifers made $460.
Murrumbo from the Bylong Valley sold a pen of Angus/Hereford cross heifers for $570, while a pen of 13 Hereford heifers made $480.
Only two TSLAA-endorsed store sales remain on the calendar this year, November 24 and December 8. The first sale for 2024 will be on January 19.
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