NSW steer finishers competed strongly on the top end Hereford calves at the 51st annual Elders and Landmark feature weaner calf sale, to result in prices hitting $1280.
Selling agents Landmark and Elders yarded 3350 Hereford, Hereford cross, Black Baldy and Angus steers for the Hamilton fixture on January 9.
Buyers were met with well-drafted big runs of one-mark whiteface autumn drop calves, all weaned and the majority carrying European Union accreditation.
In the heavier end of the Hereford weaners over 350kg, the market shifted up a gear by 15c/kg to settle at 295-325c/kg, or $124 up on the morning sale at $1088-$1280.
Steers weighing 250-350kg liveweight were $38 up to finish at 285-339c/kg or $776-$1110.
Hereford cross steers finished at 292-329c/kg or $890-$1181.
Black Baldy steers were firm on the morning sale with prices settling at 307-325c/kg or $1031-$1157.
The European Union accredited pens made 295-339c/kg or $776-$1280.
As an indicator, the opening run of Angus steers sold for 319-334c/kg or $1099-$1248.
Cattle were booked to Landmark International, Ray White Rural Lavington, Princess Royal, Carter Lindsay & Weber, J.J Kelly, Elders Holbrook, Paul Mason, Lanyon’s Hamilton, Miller Whan & John, Thomas Foods International and Alex Scott & Staff.
Topping the sale on a dollars per head basis was John and Liz Craig, “Inverell’’, Hamilton, with their pen of Yarram Park blood steers selling for $1280 or 321c/kg. The March/April drop steers weighed 399kg and were bought by repeat client and NSW steer finisher, Paul Mason, Wellington, NSW.
The Craig family also topped the sale on a cents per kilogram basis with a pen weighing 274kg and making 339c/kg or $929 to Andrew Whan, Miller Whan & John, Mt Gambier, SA.
Grazier and bullock fattener Tim Hutton judged the Herefords Australia champion pen and presented the sash to the Craig family. The pen of 87 steers weighed 371kg and sold to Paul Mason for 322c/kg or $1195.
Mr Hutton said the steers exhibited great length and would grow into ideal bullocks.
Gippsland steer finishers were active in the sale, with Alex Scott & Staff, Warragul, buying 200 head at 320-380kg for $1050-$1150.
Matt Weber, Carter Lindsay & Weber, Dubbo, NSW, is looking to buy 600 head out of the western district sales to finish on grazing cereals at Geurie.
He paid an average of 310c/kg for cattle weighing an average of 358kg. He sells them either over-the-hooks or into the prime market.
“The Herefords I bought here last year did well despite the tough winter,’’ Mr Weber said.
“I concentrate on buying the best genetics and like the Herefords as they finish earlier.’’
Regular buyer Paul Mason recently sold the Hereford steers he sourced from the 2017 Hamilton sales over the hooks to JBS Australia’s Great Southern brand.
“Despite the cold and dry winter, the cattle did well and were 20kg heavier than normal,’’ Mr Mason said.
“I paid $1400 and sold them for an average of $1850.’’
Mr Mason plans to buy 600 Herefords across the western district sales.
“Today I paid 321-325c/kg for 260 cattle weighing 333-400kg – the market is back due to the fairly flat fat market,’’ he said.
“I look at the genetics and go for the cattle I can take through to heavy export weights (360kg dressed) so they need growth, weight for age and performance.’’
Mr Mason said weaning weights were heavier each year as producers invested in improved genetics, weaning techniques and management methods.
“I will not buy unweaned cattle,’’ he said.
In the Hereford-cross pens, Simon Ferrier, Coleraine, was pleased to receive 319c/kg for EU accredited 336kg Hereford-Shorthorn steers.
“Crossbreeding results in additional weight and improved fat cover,’’ Mr Ferrier said.
“I am always looking for cattle with depth, length, fat cover and temperament.’’
Long time vendor David Lyons, Melville and Melville Park studs, Vasey, sold his top pen of weaners, 347kg and EU accredited, for 320c/kg, and the seconds, 302kg, for 336c/kg.
“It was a solid sale as we couldn’t expect the high prices to continue – there had to be a correction,’’ Mr Lyons said.
“The sale held up well and we are at a sustainable point where the bullock fatteners can make money out of their cattle.
“It was a strong yarding of cattle today drawing strong competition.’’
Landmark Hamilton auctioneer Sam Savin said the sale was supported by Landmark International buying 300-340kg cattle to grain feed in South Australia for a Russian export order.
“There was plenty of breeding in the Hereford cattle here, and they tracked evenly price wise with the Angus,’’ Mr Savin said.
“We had strong support on the EU cattle from bullock fatteners Paul Mason and Matt Weber.
“The majority of the heavier EU Hereford cattle stayed in the system.
“It was a solid sale all the way through – the heavy and middle run Herefords sold well at 300c/kg plus.
“There was no tail and they were all big, growthy cattle – it was surprising the weight in the cattle as the season has been wet.
“Everyone did a good job of weaning.’’
Inverell: 15, EU, Yarram Park blood, 399kg, March/April drop, 321c/kg or $1280
Sandy Camp: 21, EU, Roeston blood, 406kg, February/March drop, 308c/kg or $1250
Wootong Vale: 23, EU, Bowmont, Melville Park, Mt Difficult and Oak Downs blood, 379kg, 316c/kg or $1198
Glenerin: 20, 400kg, Allendale and Days Whiteface blood, 299c//kg or $1196
Inverell: 87, EU, Yarram Park blood, 371kg, 321c/kg or $1195
Nevflo: 15, Wolbull blood, 400kg, 295c/kg or $1180
Wando Dale: 24, EU, Injemira, Melville Park and Glendan Park blood, 374kg, 314ckg or $1174
Beerik: 75, EU, Yarram Park, Injemira and Melville Park blood, 359kg, March/April drop, 325c/kg or $1167
Seymour Park: 22, Allendale blood, 365kg, 313c/kg or $1142
Glenerin: 28, 343kg, Allendale and Days Whiteface blood, $1108
Cypress Hill: 10, 369kg, 295c/kg or $1088
Maurven Slopes: 15, EU, Taronga blood, 335kg, 322c/kg or $1079
Inverell: 72, EU, Yarram Park blood, 333kg, 320c/kg or $1065
Walkenny Park: 23, Bowmont blood, 316kg, 329c/kg or $1040
Rossall: 23, Melville Park and Taronga blood, 325kg, 315c/kg or $1024
Inverell: 14, Yarram Park blood, 274kg, 339c/kg or $929
Sandy Camp: 22, EU, 391kg, 325c/kg or $1271; 13, EU, 356kg, 319c/kg or $1135
Banool: 14, 364kg, 318c/kg or $1157
Springdale: 15, 363kg, 316c/kg or $1147
1. Owen McClure, Beerik, Coleraine, sold this run of 75 Yarram Park and Injemira and Melville Park blood steers, 359kg, for 325c/kg or $1167 to steer finisher Paul Mason, Wellington, NSW.
2. Travis and Ron Beaton, Giant Rock Partnership, sold this pen of 24 Injemira, Melville Park and Glendan Park blood steers, 374kg, for 314c/kg or $1174 at the 51st annual Hamilton weaner calf sale.
3. Maggie, Sam, Liz and John Craig, “Inverell’’, Hamilton, were presented with the Herefords Australia champion pen of steers at the 51st annual Hamilton feature weaner sale.
4. Herefords Australia chairman Bill Kee presents the champion pen sash to John Craig, “Inverell’’, for a pen of 87 Yarram Park blood stars. The 371kg steers sold for 322c/kg or $1195 to Paul Mason, Wellington, NSW.
5. Alvio and Alicia Trovatello, Glendan Park Hereford stud, Kyneton, were among the crowd at the 51st annual Hamilton weaner calf sale.
7. Elders auctioneer Aaron Malseed knocks down the opening Hereford pen of 406kg steers for 308c/kg or $1250.
8. Auctioneer Aaron Malseed takes bids on the Herefords Australia champion pen. The draft of 87 one-mark calves from Inverell, Hamilton, sold to steer finisher Paul Mason, Wellington, NSW, for 322c/kg or $1195.
9. Regular buyer at the Hamilton sales, Paul Mason, Wellington, is expecting to buy 600 Hereford steers over the week of western district sales, paying 321-325c/kg.
10. Bids were flying thick and fast at the Hamilton weaner calf sale on Tuesday for auctioneer Aaron Malseed.
11. Hereford steers topped at $1280 and 340c/kg at the 51st annual Hamilton weaner calf sale on Tuesday.
12. David Lyons, Melville Park stud, Vasey, sold 347kg steers for 320c/kg and the seconds weighing 302kg for 336c/kg at the Hamilton weaner calf sale.
13. Geoff Lambert, Paschendale, and Simon Ferrier, Coleraine, watched Simon’s Hereford/Shorthorn cross steers, 379kg, sell for $1118 at the Hamilton sale.
14. Katie, Heidi, Ben and Zoe Wooldridge, Merino, attended the Hamilton sale to see their Dinwooly Farm steers, Melville Park and Allendale blood, 278kg, for 335c/kg.