Vendors regained their confidence in the market as buyers kicked up a gear on steers and heifers at the Ensay Weaner Sale, lifting autumn drop heifer prices to top at $2240.
Selling agents Elders Bairnsdale yarded 1100 mixed sex weaners for the March 8 fixture at the Ensay yards.
Principal buyers included steer finishers Arthur Angliss, Romsey, Ian Lester, King Island, and Marc Greening, Injemira Beef Genetics, Book Book, along with Delaney Livestock and Property, SEJ Leongatha, Alex Scott & Staff, Warragul, Elders branches at Holbrook, Myrtleford, Albury, Bairnsdale, Warragul, Yea, Kilmore, and Wagga Wagga, Nutrien Ag Cooma, and Albury commission agent Graham Ward.
Autumn drop Shorthorn/Hereford steers rang the bell to top the sale on $2130 and sold down to $1300.
The purebred Hereford autumn drop steers sold for $710-$1820, or 412-482c/kg, while the European Union accredited pens made $1040-$1820.
The spotlight was firmly on the females with the unjoined heifers outgunning their siblings by topping at $2240 for Shorthorn/Herefords.
The purebred Hereford unjoined heifers sold for $800-$1610.
Jamie Quinlan, Elders Yea, judged the Herefords Australia champion pen, awarding the sash to Evan and Di Newcomen, Ensay, a pen of 21 Hereford and Shorthorn/Hereford, European Union accredited, steers.
The April/May drop calves were also the best presented pen in honour of Tony Pianto.
Repeat buyers and steer finishes Arthur and Jenny Angliss, Romsey, snapped up the pen after a bidding duel for $2130.
Mr Angliss said the Hereford and Shorthorn/Hereford steers averaged 1.5kg a day off grass.
Claiming top price in the Hereford autumn drop calves was Barry and Topsy Newcomen, Newcomen Herefords, Ensay, with a pen of 20 EU accredited steers and selling for $1820 to Anthony Delaney, Delaney Livestock and Property.
The April/May drop steers had a green weight of 415kg to give a curfewed price of 461c/kg.
Restocker Greg Prichard, Tallangatta, returned to buy Evan and Di Newcomen’s Shorthorn/Hereford females after setting a record for the Ensay sale of $2600 in 2022 for the Newcomen’s strawberry roan heifers.
Mr Prichard paid $2240 for the pen of 22 heifers and said the 2022 record priced heifers were calving now.
Lynn and Pam Vearing, Glen Goulburn Poll Herefords, Whittlesea, were also buying heifers through Anthony Delaney, Delaney Livestock and Property.
The Vearings run their cattle enterprise across five properties.
Vendor Phil “Bluey” Commins, Nunniong Herefords, Ensay, offered 120 July/August drop steers, with the tops estimated to weigh 300kg, and 80 heifers.
The top pen of Nunniong calves made $1450.
Morgan Davies, Elders Bairnsdale, said the sale drew strong support from repeat buyers.
“The big thing is a lot of people come to the mountains to buy Hereford calves and that was certainly the case again today,” he said.
“The vendors and buyers were happy.
“The rain event last year caught us unguarded so there has been a fair investment in gravel and excavation to bring the yards back on a level playing field.”
E & D Newcomen: 21, Hereford and Shorthorn/Hereford, EU, $2130
P & E Pendergast: 21, Hereford and Shorthorn/Hereford, EU, $1900
B & A Newcomen: 20, Hereford, EU, 415kg, $1820
C & J Lloyd: 18, Hereford and Shorthorn/Hereford, EU, $1800
R & W Newcomen: 20, Hereford, EU, $1750
G & C Farmer: 20, Hereford, $1750
W McCole: 15, Hereford, $1710
A & E Pendergast: 12, Hereford and Hereford/Shorthorn, $1700
Nunniong Herefords: 19, Hereford, $1450
E & D Newcomen: 22, Shorthorn/Hereford, EU, $2240
B & A Newcomen: 20, Hereford, $1610
A & E Pendergast: 23, Hereford, $1500
R & W Newcomen: 24, Hereford, EU, $1500
Nunniong Herefords: 20, Hereford, $1450