New season lambs open at €120/hd
The best indicator of the optimism out there at the moment in the sheep sector is the lively level of interest in the trade for ewes with lambs at foot.
A big sale at Athenry mart yesterday met with very good trade. One small quality lot of new season lambs weighing 45kg sold to a local abattoir for €120. Last year's crop was making €50-65 over the weight or up to €120/hd.
At Tullow mart last week young ewes with twin lambs made from €140 up to €196, while those with singles sold in the range of €102-176/hd depending on age and quality. The numbers of cull ewes on offer was scarce. The well-fleshed ones made a maximum of €104 with the rest selling from upwards of €42. Store lambs were scarce and made from €32-46 over, reflecting a price range of €58-85/hd.
In Manorhamilton, Texel-Charolais cross ewe lambs weighing 50kg sold for €115 with the main run of heavier types selling for €50-60 over. Factory types of 45kg made from €40-50 over. Youngish ewes with lambs at foot and suitable for further breeding sold for prices up to €165.
Due to St Patrick's Day, Enniscorthy brought their mart forward from last Wednesday. This resulted in smaller numbers than normal but there was a buoyant trade all round. The butcher and factory hoggets made from €93-117 or €47-65 over. There was very good demand for ewes and lambs, with some ewes with pairs of lambs making €200.
In Raphoe there were 1,000 sheep on offer and sales are starting to get smaller. Factory agents were active for dry ewes, paying from €50-130/hd.
Prices ranged from €44-52 over for store lambs.