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Summer lull settles in for sheep, goat sales

Producers are getting busy around the farm and will defer marketing

The temperatures may have been stubbornly sticking to the low side, but already it is starting to feel like a summer market.

That’s when producers, busy with summer farm projects and other activities, withdraw from the market and animal numbers fall. Generally prices take a breather and decline a bit during this period too.

At the May 1 sale, Winnipeg Livestock Auction received just 68 sheep and goats.

The sheep sale saw ewes that seemed to have some major weight, which created lower bidding. However, the prices remained within last sale range. There appeared to be a price difference between the wool and hair ewes. The price ranged from $0.95 to $1.11/lb. for the hair ewes. Prices ranged from $1.08 to $1.12/lb. for the wool ewes.

A 195-pound Katahdin-cross ram brought $197.20 ($1.36/lb.).

A 165-pound sheared Suffolk-cross lamb and a 165-pound sheared Cheviot-cross lamb both brought $1.45/lb. A 115-pound Dorper-cross lamb exhibited showmanship quality, but was a little too fat. This lamb could have been a product of a handling project.

The bidding was quite strong for the lightweight lambs. The 71- and 74-pound lambs brought $2.76/lb.

A 60-pound Dorper-cross lamb brought $2.55/lb.

Goat buyers had limited choice within the goat doe class, with only dairy (Alpine-cross) goats on offer. Better body conditioning could have possibly improved the bidding.

Two 98-pound Saanen-cross goat wethers entered the arena in a professional manner. These two goats acted as a team, exhibiting showmanship. They were very impressive in their groomed appearance. The bidding was exciting and reached $1.80/lb.

Following the pattern of past sales, the goat kid class saw less buyer interest, especially for the low-weight goat kids was not present. The prices have really dropped, a usual summer pattern. Even those spotted goat kids, which normally create some bidding excitement, could barely raise a stir.

The Ontario Stockyard Report showed that interest was in good-quality lambs, which created higher prices. All other classes remained constant and unchanged from the last sale.

photo: File

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