Cattle: There were just over 1,600 head yarded for the first sale of the year. The yarding consisted of a large percentage of yearlings with the number of heifers, more than double the number of yearling steers offered. Cows dominated the grown cattle and the yarding of young cattle also consisted of a small penning of vealers. Quality was good with several runs of well-bred steers and heifers offered.
Competition was strong with backgrounders and feeders keen to acquire cattle. Light re-stocker vealer steers sold to a top of 427c, and heifers sold to 346c/kg. Feeder steers topped at 357c, while feeder heifers sold to 342c to average 330c/kg. The small number of trade yearling heifers sold to a top of 340c/kg.
The yarding of export cattle was made up mainly of cows, along with an odd grown steer and a few pens of heifers. Grown heifers sold to a top of 294c/kg. The cow market was 10c to 12c/kg dearer compared to the pre-Christmas sales. Medium weight 3 score cows averaged 235c, while heavy 4 score cows sold to a top of 249c/kg. Local sales: Williamson & Stibbard milk tooth heifers 351kg $3.12c/kg $1097.
Sheep: Close to 4,500 head of sheep were yarded of which there was around 2,700 lambs offered. The yarding consisted of a good quality penning of trade and heavy lambs, however there was a larger number of light store lambs through the sale. Competition was strong with trade lambs under 24kg selling to a top of $142, while heavy and extra heavy lambs sold to a top of $190/head. Re-stocker lambs met keen demand, reflecting the good season being experienced in most areas, with prices ranging from $40 to $103/head. There were increased numbers of hoggets through the sale, with the top price of $120/head.
The yarding of mutton consisted of a good supply of ewes and wethers with several pens carrying a good skin. The market was equal to and above the pre-Christmas sales, with ewes selling to a top of $108.50 and wethers sold to $100/head.