Sheep marts: Ewes with lambs at foot making over €170 in parts

A strong trade was reported at sheep marts around the country, with ewes with lambs at foot going under the hammer at some sales.

Cast ewe prices were met with a slight improvement, while one mart in the east saw an increase of between €3-5/head for butcher and factory hoggets.

Numbers varied across the country, depending on the mart.

Mountbellew Mart

There was a larger number of sheep on offer at the sale in Mountbellew Mart in Co. Galway on Saturday, January 21.

Over 400 sheep went under the hammer, as hogget prices were similar to the trade the previous week.

Meanwhile, the small number of cast ewes that were on offer were met with a slight improvement, as prices ranged from €72-105/head.

Sample Prices:
  • 6 Weather Hoggets – 50.5kg – €99.
  • 12 Weather Hoggets – 38kg – €80.
  • 12 Ewe Hoggets – 45.7kg – €95.
  • 7 Ewe Hoggets – 43.1kg – €92.
  • 4 Ewe Hoggets – 53.8kg – €113.

The trade for ewes with lambs at foot as well as in-lamb ewes was slightly down on the previous week to a large supply.

Three second crop ewes with single lamb at foot sold for €160/head, while one first crop ewe with a single lamb at foot made €178.

One second crop ewe with strong twin lambs at foot made €222. Three third crop ewes scanned with singles due in mid-February sold for €125/head.

Kilkenny Mart

There was a small sale of sheep in Kilkenny Mart on Monday, January 23, but trade was reported to be sharper compared to the previous week.

Butcher and factory hoggets showed an increase of between €3-5/head, while cast ewes sold for between €50-112/head.

Butcher hoggets weighing between 50-58kg sold from €98-110/head, or €1.90/kg to €2.10/kg.

Prices of €2/kg to €2.16/kg were reported for factory hoggets, with the highest selling lot making €102/head. 

Store hoggets were selling for between €75-90/head, with weights ranging from 35kg to 42kg.

Kenmare Mart

Over 850 sheep were sold in Kenmare Mart on Saturday, January 21, with a good clearance of stock, according to Mart Manager Dan McCarthy.

There was plenty of farmer buyers for the store lambs and the factory men were concentrating on the heavier lambs.

“Suffolk lambs weighing 32kg made €70, while Scotch lambs weighing 35kg also made €70, another pen of Scotch lambs weighing 30kg sold for €54,” he said.

Any heavy ewes on offer were making around €1/kg, while lighter ewes were making a bit less, he added.

“There will be ewes with lambs at foot sold here until March or April, but lads are scanning now and deciding to get rid of any empty ewes,” he said.