Despite lamb prices remaining firm, it was the prices being paid for heavy fat ewes and quality young ewes in lamb that were claiming the limelight over the past week.
Mountbellew Mart reported a high of €138 and €220/hd for the two categories respectively.
At Athenry yesterday, the best animals made €47-52 over the €/kg. Well-fleshed lambs were freely making €55-65 over the weight to a top price of €124.
Lambs weighing 35-46kg sold for €40-54 over. Heavy ewes made up to €125.
Cull ewes were selling for €52-100 in Fermoy. The lambs over 50kg made €58-63 with their weight.
Dowra Mart had 600 sheep on offer on Saturday last, with good demand on the day.
The best of the store lambs made from €75-95 while a few pens of heavy types made up to €110 each. Heavy cull ewes sold from €70-105, while the lighter feeding ewes made from €50-70/hd. Best demand on the day was for the good in-lamb ewes with the best making from €130-180, while older in-lamb ewes sold for €70-110 each.
Lambs weighing up to 50kg made €47-55 over their weight at Baltinglass Mart. Factory types up to 45kg were making €40-50 over.
Store lamb prices over the weight ran from €30-40. Suffolk cross ewe lambs made up to €124 each, with Cheviot types making €45-55 over the weight. Cull ewes made €65-92/hd. Fat rams sold to €85/hd.
Mountbellew had a large number of sheep on offer, with an improved trade for all lambs on offer. There was a very firm trade for heavier ewes.
A small number of in-lamb ewes were offered for sale. Top price for lambs was €117 paid for a pen of wether lambs weighing 61kg. Other lots of quality lambs sold for €50-60 over their weight. Well-fleshed heavy cull ewes made up to a high of €138, while ewes for further feeding sold back to €78/hd.
Prices for second crop ewes on the point of lambing to a Charollais ram hit a high of €220, while third and fourth crop ewes, also in lamb to a Charollais ram, sold for €115-176/hd.