Now fully into the new year, Manitoba’s livestock auction markets are expecting to see numbers of cattle increase in February and yet more toward spring.
“It’s just getting started in the new year. The warm weather definitely helps,” said Harold Unrau of Grunthal Livestock Auction Mart.
There were 759 feeder cattle and 170 slaughter cattle sold at the Grunthal auction on Jan. 28 — a marked increase from its Jan. 21 sale, which saw only 224 feeders and 56 slaughters come through.
Brock Taylor at Pipestone Livestock Sales concurred. “It’s kind of seasonal right now, as it should be,” he said.
For Pipestone’s Jan. 24 sale there were 278 feeder cattle and 35 for slaughter — a threefold improvement in numbers compared to its Jan. 10 auction which had 67 feeders and 32 for slaughter.
Some of the other auctions across Manitoba saw numbers remain about the same or increase. For instance, Ashern Auction Mart sold a total of 2,097 head at its Jan. 22 auction and 2,040 cattle this week. Meanwhile, Gladstone Auction Mart saw its numbers double from 541 on Jan. 21 to 1,177 on Jan. 28.
Heartland Livestock Services’ Brandon auction house had 521 cattle on Jan. 21 and 1,468 on Jan. 28. Killarney Auction Mart’s traffic rose from 799 on Jan. 20 to 1,224 a week later.
Unrau and Taylor also agreed prices were steady for the most part. At Grunthal, for example, feeder steers (400-500 lbs.) fetched $200 to $257.50 per hundredweight (cwt) on Jan. 21. On Jan. 28, the same cattle sold for $190-$262.50/cwt.