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Herd-Building Producers’ Interest Sustains Prices

The high Assiniboine River once again forced the cancellation of the weekly cattle sale at Heartland Livestock in Brandon, but that meant big numbers at other areas in the province’s southwest.

Keith Cleaver, manager of the Brandon unit, said with the evacuation order still in place, the earliest the next sale could be held in the Wheat City would be the week of May 31.

“We have a lot of employees who would like to get back to work so they can get a paycheque,” Cleaver said. “The river has gone down, but right now they (city officials) are worried about seepage in the dike.”

Forty-five minutes west at Virden, Heartland Livestock saw more than 1,400 cattle come through the gates, an increase of more than 100 per cent from the 611 animals for sale one week previous.

“We had a large portion come from around the Brandon area,” said Rick Gabrielle, a market representative with Heartland in Virden. However, he added, the quantity did not have a

bearish impact on prices at the sale.

“The price actually became more aggressive with the high numbers,” Gabrielle said. “The buyers were able to put loads together, and were able to start something and finish it, so they wanted the animals.”

The Canadian dollar declined during the week ended May 23 to around the US$1.0250 level, but when asked if the sinking loonie brought in more business from the U.S., Gabrielle said, “The south (U. S.) isn’t a big draw right now, although we did have a number of age-verified cattle go down there.”

The majority of the fat cows and feeders were heading west, he said.

Even with summer approaching, prices across the province have held up well, and a number of producers in Manitoba have been looking at increasing their herds. Gabrielle said this was on display at their weekly sale.

“Some of the better-breeding heifers were being purchased by local producers who are looking to keep them to build up their herds,” he said.

Prices in the slaughter sector have been strong, he said, and that trend also continued during the week.

FROM THE AUCTION FLOORS

Note:AllpricesinCanadian dollarsperhundredweight (cwt).Thesepricesalsogenerally representthetopone-third ofsalesreportedbythe auctionyard.

Ashern Livestock Mart:An estimated 1,300 head of cattle were sold at the sale held on May 18. In the slaughter market, D1 and D2 cows sold anywhere from $60 to $70; D3 and D5 cows, $50-$57; age verified, $70-$80; and good bulls, $70- $99.

Feeder steers weighing 700- 800 lbs. brought $100-$129; 600-700 lbs., $105-$139; 500- 600 lbs., $110-$155; and 400- 500 lbs., $115-$148.50.

Feeder heifers weighing 700- 800 lbs. brought $100-$125; 600-700 lbs., $110-$126; 500- 600 lbs., $102-$131.50; and 400-500 lbs., $115-$138.

Gladstone Auction Mart: The May 17 sale saw a total of 616 head of cattle sold at the Gladstone yard. In the slaughter market, bulls sold from $75 to $86.25 while cows brought $40-$74.

Feeder steers weighing 800- 900 lbs. sold from $90 to $111;

700-800 lbs., $90-$122.25; 600- 700 lbs., $100-$146; 500-600 lbs., $100-$144; 400-500 lbs., $100-$163; and 300-400 lbs., $115-$164.50.

Feeder heifers in the 900-to 1,000-lb. category traded from $70 to $100.50; 800-900 lbs., $75-$105.50; 700-800 lbs., $85- $120; 600-700 lbs., $95-$129; 500-600 lbs., $100-$137; 400- 500 lbs., $110-$141.50; and 300-400 lbs., $115-$135.

Grunthal Livestock Auction Mart:There were 160 slaughter cattle and 209 feeders sold at the Grunthal yard on May 18. In the slaughter market, fleshy export cows traded from $67 to $70.50; lean export cows, $59-$65; mature cows, $55-$60; and export bulls, $81- $88.25.

Feeder heifers weighing 700- 800 lbs. brought $100-$112.50; 600-700 lbs., $104-$114.50; 500-600 lbs., $110-$121; 400- 500 lbs., $114-$128; and under 400 lbs., $115-$125.

Feeder steers weighing 700- 800 lbs. ranged from $105 to $113; 600-700 lbs., $112-$125; 500-600 lbs., $122-$133; 400- 500 lbs., $130-$140; and under 400 lbs., $135-$145.

Heartland Livestock Services, Brandon:There was no sale during the week due to flooding.

Heartland Livestock Services, Virden:There were about 1,426 cattle sold at the sale held May 18. Butcher steers brought $92-$96.75 while butcher heifers sold from $91 to $95.50. Ageverified/ young cows ranged from $68 to $77; D1 and D2 cows, $67-$73; D3 cows, $62- $66; shelly cows, $42-$60; and mature bulls, $83-$88.

Feeder steers weighing 900- 1,000 lbs. brought $98-$109; 800-900 lbs., $107-$118; 700- 800 lbs., $116-$130; 600-700 lbs., $127-$144; 500-600 lbs., $130-$152; and 400-500 lbs., $135-$157.

Feeder heifers weighing 900-1,000 lbs. traded from $94 to $104; 800-900 lbs., $99- $112; 700-800 lbs., $108-$120; 600-700 lbs., $115-$129; 500- 600 lbs., $122-$136; and 400- 500 lbs., $125-$139.

Killarney Auction Mart: Prices not available from this week’s sale.

Ste. Rose Auction Mart:A total of 737 cattle were sold at the May 19 sale. In the slaughter market, D1 and D2 cows ranged from $67 to $77; D3 and D4 cows, $52-$66; canners, $35-$50; and bulls, $87-$96.

Feeder steers weighing 800- 900 lbs. brought $100-$112; 700-800 lbs., $112-$125; 600- 700 lbs., $120-$145; 500-600 lbs., $130-$165; and 400-500 lbs., $135-$165.

Feeder heifers weighing 700-800 lbs. brought $105- $120; 600-700 lbs., $110-$129; 500-600 lbs., $110-$126; 400- 500 lbs., $115-$129; and 300- 400 lbs., $110-$126.

Taylor Auctions, Melita: The sale held May 19 resulted in 157 slaughter cattle and 300 feeders being sold. In the slaughter market, D1 and D2 cows sold from $68 to $74; D3 and D5 cows, $60-$68; and good bulls, $85-$90.

Feeder steers weighing 900- 1,000 lbs. brought $100-$110; 800-900 lbs., $110-$118; 700- 800 lbs., $120-$130; 600-700 lbs., $125-$148; 500-600 lbs., $130-$150; 400-500 lbs., $135- $155; and 300-400 lbs., $140- $164.

Feeder heifers weighing 800-900 lbs. traded from $105 to $120; 700-800 lbs., $110- $120; 600-700 lbs., $115-$130; 500-600 lbs., $120-$135; 400- 500 lbs., $125-$140; and 300- 400 lbs., $135-$145.

Winnipeg Livestock Sales: There were about 535 cattle sold at the sale held on May 20. In the slaughter market, age-verified/young cows ranged from $60 to $74.50; D1 and D2 cows, $66-$69; D3 cows, $62-$66; shelly cows, $52-$62; and mature bulls, $82-$90.

Feeder steers weighing 700- 800 lbs. brought $115-$128; 600-700 lbs., $120-$145; and 500-600 lbs. brought $125- $145.

Feeder heifers weighing 800-900 lbs. traded from $100 to $105; 700-800 lbs., $108- $113; 600-700 lbs., $110-$120; and 500-600 lbs., $115-$130.

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BRENT HARDERCNSC

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– Rick Gabrielle, Heartland Livestock Services, Virden

Thebuyerswereabletoputloadstogether, andwereabletostartsomethingand finishit,sotheywantedtheanimals.”

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