By Kirra Grimes
HEAVY lambs sold well at VLE Leongatha’s first sheep sale of the year, fetching up to $148/head, a big step up from the pre-Christmas sale.
Warragul processors Radfords dominated the bidding on a yarding of around 2500 lambs and 500 sheep, with locals picking up the store lambs to restock their paddocks.
Elders auctioneer Damien Minogue said the overall quality of the yarding was “ok without being outstanding” and that sellers would have been pleased with the results.
“For the quality they are, what they’re selling for should be pretty satisfactory. Most of the top quality lambs have already been sold over the hooks but these sales suit local people with smaller lots,” he said.
SEJ sold a pen of 71 lambs for $148/head, and the agency’s general manager livestock Bill Egan said the improvement in prices, up from around $135/head for top quality lambs at the December sale, reflected the strength of the lamb market across the state.
“The December sale’s always a bit hit and miss but they sold very well this time around and that reflects what happening generally. The market’s very strong everywhere,” he said.
Commenting on the season, Ranceby farmer Frank Hirst said South Gippsland had been fortunate in terms of the abundance of feed, especially compared to other parts of the state.
“We’ve got feed up to our eyeballs. There’s an incredible amount of grass around. And even though sheep prefer shorter grass, and don’t particularly like wet conditions, we’ve been incredibly lucky compared to places like East Gippsland. You can’t have everything.”
VLE Leongatha will now run sheep sales weekly until the end of February.