Bill Tatt: Graziers attempt to rebuild, puts pressure on cattle availability for live trade

Stock and property: In his latest column, Bill Tatt (pictured) writes about northern live export market regaining some lost ground. Photo: File.
Stock and property: In his latest column, Bill Tatt (pictured) writes about northern live export market regaining some lost ground. Photo: File.

Week Ending 22/05/2020

The northern live export market has regained some lost ground with reports filtering through that as much as $3.00/kg to $3.10/kg is currently available for the right cattle to be loaded end of May early June.

This price rebound has partly been fed by the increased competition from Southern re-stockers who are very keen to purchase cattle to eat the abundant feed.

Recently a Central West agent secured cattle from the Territory which were delivered and weighed at a depot in Queensland at the vendors expense and then trucked to this part of the world.

The cattle in question were all "flat backs" containing some brahman content and arrived safely.

My report is that both agent and client are very happy with the end result.

Talking brahman cattle we currently have proper brahman cow and calf units spelling and being fed at Dubbo on their journey south.

Both cow and calf enjoy a high brahman content but in the main look to be attractive units and appear very docile.

Back to the north where the drought over the previous two to three years has caused a decline of some 20 to 30 per cent over a wide area of the top end.

Recent monsoon rains have led to graziers attempting to rebuild their herds from this depleted state.

This in turn has put pressure on the availability of suitable cattle for the live trade.

The wool market has for the most part been in the doldrums in recent weeks.

So it was nice to note that after a month of decline Merino wool at least showed some form of revival with a nine per cent rise in the market.

Crossbred wool still remains depressed.

The offering of 23,370 bales was almost 2000 bales less than the previous week and year on year we saw a fall of 165,000 plus bales which equates to almost an 11 per cent decline.

Monday, May 18 saw a reduced yarding of sheep and lambs at the Dubbo sale complex.

Demand again was exceptionally strong for lambs suitable to go onto crop or the feedlot.

Good trade lambs met with stronger competition to be $3.00 to $5.00 better with heavy export lambs barely holding firm.

Mutton numbers were very limited and met with strong demand.

As this column is being compiled light rain is falling in the Dubbo area with the eight-day forecast looking positive of more follow-up rain over much of Eastern and Central West of New South Wales.

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