Mixed fortunes see mid-range heifer prices down as lighter lots improve

Joe Healy

IT WAS a week of mixed fortunes for the cattle trade around the country with heifers probably faring worst. While the light and heavy type weanling heifers showed good improvements, the middle-range ones between 300-400kg endured a tough week and were back by 2-10c/kg at 235-280c/kg.

The lighter lots were up by 11-14c/kg at 255-305c/kg while weanlings more than 400kg were also improved by as much as 10c/kg to a range of 230-260c/kg. Lesser quality lots moved at 200-225c/kg.

The mature heifers were back by 1-5c/kg ranging from 205-265c/kg, with plainer types making from 180-195c/kg.

The light weanling bulls sold for €225-290c/kg. Bulls more than 300kg made from 205-260c/kg. Plain bulls met with much better interest than the previous week with prices up by as much as 22c/kg at 145-190c/kg.

On the flip side, the plain steers were back by between 3-7c/kg in a range from 145-160c/kg. Heavy continental steers were also back by up to 7c/kg at 190-230c/kg. The 400-600kg lots made from 190-250c/kg.

At the pedigree bull sales the Herefords attracted the most interest with prices reflecting this.

Bullocks under 400kg made from €280-680 over the weight at Ballymote. Heavier lots ranged from €400-630 with the €/kg. Heifers up to 400 kg made from €300-700 over the weight. The 400-500kg lots sold for €340-600 over.

Heavier lots were making up to €740 with the weight. Suckler cow prices ran from €1,000-1,800/unit. Store cull Friesian cows were selling for €1-350 with the €/kg. Continental types made from €400-640 with their weight. Weanling bulls under 300kg moved at €250-560 over the weight.

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The 300-400kg bulls were making from €340-550 over. The heavier lots made up to €700 over. Weanling heifers sold for €250-500 with the €/kg.

Their final "day" sale for this spring is next Friday (May 23) at 11am. Sales then revert to Thursdays, beginning on May 29.

A tougher trade for store bullocks especially lighter types was the story from Kilkenny, but big numbers of cull cows continued to meet with a solid trade while heifers also sold well.

They had 800 hd for sale overall. Heavy steers made from €600-900 with their weight or €1.70-2.40/kg. Included in this was a classy Friesian which made €2.01/kg.

The steers between 500-600kg made from €1.60-2.55/kg or €450-820 over.

Lots of 400-500kg sold for €1.70-2.75/kg with lighter types selling for €1.50-2.97/kg.

The fleshy heifers moved at €2.10-2.65/kg or €600-850 with the weight. Butcher types sold for €1.80-2.25/kg. Stores made from €350-660 over or €1.60-2.70/kg.

Cull Friesian cows ranged from €0.90-1.80/kg. The continental types sold for €1.25-2.00/kg.

Overall, the bullocks were a similar trade to the previous week at Ennis Mart but heavy cattle were improved by €10/hd and making from €1.76-2.52/kg.

Stores from 450-600kg made from €1.80-2.86/kg with lighter stores under 450kg selling from €1.80-2.89/kg.

Heifers were a very strong trade up €10-20/hd. Beef heifers sold from €2.05-2.65/kg with stores from €1.80-2.90/kg.

Continental cows sold for €1.55-2.35/kg with Friesian cull cows from €0.95-1.65/kg. Cull bulls made up to €1,450 or €2.03/kg.

Ballinakill had 440 cattle on offer. The heifers remain the best sellers with some of the light fancy types making close to €3/kg. The light Bullocks were also a good trade and selling for €1.90-2.85/kg.

Heavier lots sold for €1.80-2.50/kg. Beef heifers made from €1.85-2.40/kg. Stores sold for €1.70-2.52/kg.


Weanling bulls and heifers made from €1.80-2.25/kg and €1.70-2.15/kg respectively. Prices for cull cows ran from €1.20-1.80/kg.

Top class bulls more than 600kg in Raphoe were selling for €375-785 over the weight. Beef bullocks moved at €495-725 over. Stores ranged from €400-670 with the €/kg.

Beef heifers were making from €495-975 over their weight. Stores made from €320-640 over. Prices for cull cows varied from €700-1,655.

Balla Mart had 900 lots on offer. All cattle were improved in price due to the presence of more farmers around the ring buying young store bullocks and heifers.

Store bullocks around the 400kg made from €1.68-3.07/kg. Heavier steers were making from €500-865 or €1.65-2.91/kg.

There was a very large entry at Carnew Mart with 900hd on offer.

Trade for all classes was described as steady with prices similar to the previous week. Beef and forward store bullocks were selling for €1,250-1,810/hd or €600-900 over the €/kg.

At Mayo/Sligo Mart the cull cows peaked at €1,345 while the sucklers topped out at €1,780.

Their pedigree sale of 60 bulls saw the Angus bulls average €1,650, the Herefords at €2,600 while the Charolais and limousine bulls averaged €1,750 and €1,580/hd respectively.

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