Tenterfield steers sold to a top of $1651 at the Ray White weaner offering on Thursday, during a sale that delivered the best prices ever.
Selling principal Ben Sharpe held no expectations for the collection of 1100 head when last year's event hosted four times that number but buyers came anyway and while they grumbled about the price, they paid it and well beyond anyone's expectations.
Paul McFarlane has managed Knockdon Park at Black Swamp, on behalf of Sandy Casey, for the past 33 years and has never experienced weaned calves selling for as much, with a pen of European accredited Angus with Texas and Sara Park blood 323 kilograms selling for 510c/kg or $1651 through Keiran te Velde of Bob Jamieson Agencies, going to the Inverell district.
"It's a grass fed market at the moment," said Mr McFarlane.
Mark and Helen Clothier, Dingo Hill Partnership sold EU accredited Angus steers with Sara Park, Speriby North and Inglebrae blood, 273kg, for 527c/kg or $1440 going to Inverell. Their lighter calves, 177kg, stayed local, making 554c/kg or $984 going to Cottersbrook Pastoral, Sandy Flat.
Scott and Libby Sharpe, Applebutt Partnership, sold Angus steers with Raff and Rick Gates' blood, 324kg, for 490c/kg to Wickham Farms.
Joe Wagner's Boorook Station at Sandy Hill, on the eastern fall, sold Angus steers, 254kg for 530c/kg or $1348. Station manager Tony Knox said cows and last year's weaners were fed for six months although a good crop of oats last winter made a difference. For the past year the enterprise has taken advantage of drought discounts to buy in the right genetics.
Casey heifers, 275kg, made 445c/kg or $1227 going to Wickham Farms, Killarney, through their livestock manager Brendan White.
Angus heifers off Dingo Hill Partnership, 214kg, sold to a cents a kilo top of 476c/kg or $1021 going to Mitchell and Anna Hoy, Amaroo Station, Ben Lomand, through Ray White Armidale.
"We've stuck with the same numbers and fed hay since last June," said Mark Clothier. "We kept all our females and kept the top heifers at home. We'll recoup some of our hay bill after today."
Gibraltar Pastoral, Mole River, sold cows and calves separately, after the property was destocked and leased, with each unit averaging $2300.