PRIME sheep numbers were evidently on the rise as buyers and sellers flocked to Craven Cattle Mart’s Monday sale on January 20.

Prime hoggs proved were on the up with 3,271 head of lambs put forward for sale and another great overall average of 221p/kg with an SQQ of 226p at Skipton Auction Mart

Several fresh faces from Midland and Northern Counties consigned lambs for the ring.

They met a very satisfactory trade, with a full contingent of buyers in operation and eager to see what the new year had on offer.

W&J Parkinson, from Garstang, topped the market at an impressive 324.3p (37kg £120).

This was for Beltex crosses selling to Vivers Scotlamb.

Henry Atkinson, of Kettlesing, found the trip from Nidderdale worthwhile when he presented a great run of lambs with pens at 320.3p, 312.8p and 311.4p.

James Garth & Son, from slightly nearer to home Keasden, made 308.1p.

In the meantime, JE Burrow, positively local when hailing from Hanlith, and WA, VJ & JA Towler, from Grindleton, in the red rose county, both made 300p.

Messrs Garth made top price per head with Texels at £136, whilst EP&JM Hutchinson, of Faceby were next at £131.

Others reached favourable prices at £125, £124, £122, £121(x2) and £120(x2), and 59 cracking lambs from this home averaging £117.16 per head.

Other notable prices were JE Burrow who made £128, D&A Livestock, of Haverah Park, Harrogate £127, and DN&D Capstick, of Bolton-by-Bowland, £121.

Lowland Lambs saw heavier weights from 47kg to 55kg generally reaching 200p to 225p.

There were also a few pens of butcher’s types which made around 230p.

Heavier lambs of 56kg upward were reaching around 200p or just under, making £105 to £115, with odd smart pens or very heavy types £115 to £130.

The handy weight lowland sheep were again good to sell, with nice skinned pens seeing 235p to 250p, and commercial types 225p to 235p.

Hill bred sheep were also again very good to sell.

Mules/Mashams generally reached around the 200p to 210p mark, up to 219p from Steve Dorey, with the heavier end going over £100.

Good 44kg to 46kg were going for £92 to £97.

Horned lambs saw the better end of prime weights.

These saw 190p to £2+, topping at 207p from RJ Capstick, of Bolton-by-Bowland, and 204p for WH&JW Hartley, of Barnoldswick.

A big show of ewes got away to a nice trade despite not quite hitting the heights of recent weeks.

The best lowland ewes were making £110-plus, reaching a top of £140 from R Wilson, of Beckwithshaw,.

The next grade saw them going for £90 to £105.

Heavy Mules generally made £90-plus, to a top of £105.50 from E&AM Simpson, of Pateley Bridge.

Good hill sheep were not much different on the week, but a much larger proportion of the entry were horned or hill going ewes.

Cast rams averaged £77.76 with the top price made by MJ & CR Ellison, with a Texel selling for £123.50.

Over in the bovine pens, there was evidence of the taste of things to come for the coming year.

In all, there was particularly great trade for Black and White calves.

In fact all calves were selling well at Skipton Auction Mart at the Monday, January 20, fixture with 71 put forward for sale.

As mentioned, Black and Whites in particular saw a great trade, going on to average £63, with most sorts over £60.

The best blue heifers were a touch less on the week, reaching £250-£270, but lesser sorts were just as dearr.

The next grade going for £230-£250 and the younger calves either side of £200.

Blue bulls got away well with a top of £380 from C&JR Terry, of Fountains Abbey.

The best sorts and the older end were mainly reaching £300-plus.

Meanwhile slightly lesser sorts were still buyable just below £300, with the younger ones around the £220-£240 mark.

Six Angus bulls all ranged from £240-£255 and two heifers both sold at £170.

Despite the keen trade and the promise of healthy trade to come there are still calves needed next week to fulfil buyers’ requirements.

Please call Kyle with enquiries on 07538539077.