Lamb markets saw a reduction in supplies across opening sales on Monday in both Victoria and NSW.
And despite the limited numbers on offer, there were notable challenges on the demand side which led to a decline in prices for lambs and sheep across most eastern markets, dropping by $10-$30 a head.
Sales on Monday this week saw the absence of activity from some prominent domestic orders and export processors.
The weaker demand from processors affected all lamb categories, although some specific types of stock still achieved favourable outcomes.
Trade weight lambs with good shape and fat cover continued to sell well, as did certain heavy export lambs that weren't excessively large.
However when the dust settled trade lambs were off the boil $10-$18 to average 655 cents a kilogram carcase weight.
It became evident at Bendigo that export buyers were reluctant to surpass the $255 threshold, regardless of the weight of the lambs.
The export run saw an increase in weight, with the heaviest lambs estimated at around 38-40kg.
The overall market showed erratic buying trends, making it challenging to track at times, according to Meat & Livestock Australia's National livestock Reporting Service.
Buyers were generally focused on acquiring processing lambs under 700c/kg.
Only a few pens of extra-heavy shorn lambs managed to command prices above $260, reaching a top of $264.
Most lambs weighing more than 30kg ranged from $206-$250, with an average at 700c/kg, but some sales dropped to 660c/kg.
Trade and heavy lamb categories recorded averages below the 700c/kg mark, with most falling between 660-690c/kg.
The crossbred lambs weighing between 26-30kg ranged from $174-$218, while the 22-24kg medium trade lambs made between $148-$170.
Plainer trade lambs, including unshorn sucker types in long wool, were sold in the low-600c/kg price range.
Meanwhile in the mutton sale the price rise for mutton has been shortlived in a rollercoaster ride that had rates falling anywhere from $10-$30.
A larger line of heavy Merino ewes in full wool topped at $102.
Heavy crossbred ewes were priced between $75-$97, with an estimated range of 230-270c/kg.
At Ballarat, subdued market conditions were characterised by a lack of competition.
The trade lamb market met a cheaper trend of $8-$14, settling at an average of 719c/kg.
Heavy lambs in the 26-30kg weight range fell $17, while lambs weighing more than 30kg saw a dip of $13, resulting in an average of 726c/kg.