Despite the poor weather conditions over the weekend, the mart trade for the most part remained unchanged this week.

However, the influence of Northern buyers is having a major impact on price, particularly the price paid for forward and beef-type heifers.

There were over 400 cattle on offer in Bandon Mart on Monday and according to the Mart Manager Tom McCarthy the trade remained good despite the dismal weather over the weekend.

According to McCarthy, there was an exceptional trade for runner-type calves, especially for the lots ranging from 2-5 months of age, with Friesian bulls fitting this description sold at €520/head.

There was also 260 steers on offer in the Cork venue and these lots sold from €1.79-2.40/kg or €511-990 over, while the heifers in the Cork venue made €2.01-2.20/kg.

The number of cull cows coming forward was down on previous weeks with 70 passing through the ring, these lots sold from €1.74-1.83/kg, said McCarthy.

McCarthy added that the weaning trade has improved on previous weeks, especially for the better quality lots.

Balla Mart had over 1,000 lots on offer on Saturday, and according to the Mart Manager Michael Murphy there was an exceptional trade for heavy steers.

The store steer price in the Mayo venue was similar to previous weeks and ranged from €600-855 over or €1.59-2.95c/kg. One Charolais bullock weighing 490kg made €1345 or €2.74/kg, said Murphy.

According to the Mart Manager, the trade for heavier steers was exceptional with lots selling from €1.55-2.98/kg, the hammer fell on the best of these lots €1,000 over.

The lighter heifers (around 400kg) have slipped slightly and made from €1.69-3.13/kg, but their heavier counterparts improved on last week.

The continued presence of Northern buyers is influencing the prices paid for these heavier lots which sold from €1.95-2.86/kg, he said.

There was also 130 cull cows on offer in the Mayo venue and these lots sold from €1.07-2.33/kg.

The weaning trade in Elphin Mart on Monday remained lively, according to Mart Manager Gerry Connellan there was a 97% clearance for these lots.

The average price for weanlings under 300kg was €775 or €2.60/kg. The heavier lots ranging in weighs from 301-400kg averaged €938, while the top lot in this category sold for €1,170.

Weanlings which were in excess of the 500kg mark averaged €1,005, said Connellan.

The demand for cull cows also remained strong with prices ranging from €820-1,970/head, there was also a small number of cows and calves on offer and these lots sold from €1,200-2,010.

Further to the entry of cull cows there was an entry of 40 in calf heifers, which sold from €1,300-1,800.

Kilkenny Mart had a smaller sale of cattle on Thursday as 675 passed through the ring and according to the Mart Manager Michael Lynch the trade remained firm.

Cull cow prices in the Kilkenny venue were firmer then previous weeks with the dairy types sold for €1.00-1.90/kg, while the continental types made €1.55-2.11/kg, said Lynch.

Beef steers and heifers appeared to be in short supply, reported Lynch. Beef steers in the Kilkenny venue made €1.90-2.30/kg or €580-990 over, while the counterpart heifers made €2.00-2.55/kg or €600-990.

The forward store steers made €1.90-2.65/kg or €450-965 over, while the forward store heifers made €2.00-2.50/kg.

The lighter store classes or weaning types have slipped slightly on previous weeks. The greatest fall occurred in the upper end of the market where lots have slipped by approximately 50c/kg.

These steer lots made €1.80-2.50/kg on Thursday last. However, despite the fall in the male weaning price the store heifer price remained firm as lots made €1.80-2.75/kg.

Roscommon Mart had another large entry of excellent quality cattle on Friday, and according to Mart Manager Maura Quigley there was a big attendance of customers from Northern Ireland and the UK.

According to Quigley steer prices averaged €2.42/kg with the top price of €3.07/kg achieved.

She added that there was also a very lively trade for heifers where a maximum price of €2.86/kg was achieved, while these lots averaged €2.36/kg.

The Mart Manager also said that the trade for dry cows was similar to last week with these lots selling for €925-1,610 over.

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