ALTHOUGH lambing time is ongoing a decent turnout of 380 head was seen at CCM Skipton Auction Mart’s fortnightly Wednesday cattle sale late March, with trade remaining strong.

This was particularly so among the 108 young feeding bulls and with farmers needing to keep pens full good Continental consignments at 400kg-plus were able to make £1,400-£1,940, those weighing less also keenly contested, the best light Continental bulls making £1,200-£1,420, while the pick of the native bulls saw Herefords trade to £1,440. The bulk of the early Spring-born and under-13 month bulls averaged £1,321, older bulls £1,700, with overall section averages of £1,423 for Continental-x and £1,010 for natives.

Store cattle trade for 228 bullocks and heifers was a touch firmer, with plenty of strength and some strong runs of dairy-bred feeding cattle forward. Blue bullocks made to £1,920 from DT&LA Houseman, Dacre, with Continental dairy bullocks with size and flesh easily sold at £1,700-£1,880.

Plenty of lean feeding bullocks with frame made £1,400-£1,550, the next grade of feeding cattle £1,200-£1,350, while 14/15-month-old growing bullocks could make £950-£1,200. Dairy Blue bullocks sold to £1,510 from M Ryder & Sons, Harrogate, feeding heifers at £1,400-£1,500, lean or next grade meated goods £1,250-£1,400.

Native bullocks traded to £1,620 from R Naylor & Sons, Ilkley, with several meat pens at £1,600, other feeding bullocks £1,400-£1,500, the next grading £1,280-£1,380 and growing goods £1,170. Native heifers sold to £1,720, again from the Ryders, other thick-bred native heifers making £1,500-plus, lean feeding types £1,400-£1,500, the next grade £1,150-£1,300.

Black and white bullocks sold to £1,200 from L Mellin, Bracewell, all others at £1,070 upwards. Suckler-bred bullocks met a strong trade for both hard cattle and fleshed-over goods, Limousin from JA&JM Wade, Cononley, selling to £1,800, plenty of other retail spec suckler bullocks making £1,600-£1,700, leaner retail types £1,450-£1,550. Younger bullocks sold at £1,200-£1,400 and yearling bullocks £1,000-£1,300.

Suckler-bred heifers sold to £1,800 twice from R Bamforth, Denby Dale & TH&K Wood, Harrogate, plenty of other thick heifers at £1,600-£1,750 and other retail spec cattle £1,400-£1,600. More growing heifers sold at £1,250-£1,400 and younger goods £1,000-£1,180.

A smaller entry of 27 beef feeding bulls and cows were a decent trade, with leaner, lighter cows dearer on the fortnight, medium and heavy cows similar, seeing prices of £1,400 to £1,600 for the best end and £1,200-plus for mediums. Continentals averaged £1,243, natives £1,135 and black and whites £1,450. A brace of stock bulls made £2,450 and £1,950.

A handful of handy-weighted 525- 580kg prime cattle produced a strong per kilo average of 335.47p across the board, levelling at £1,845 per head. Trade peaked at £1,923, 346.5p/kg, for a 555kg heifer from Ben Townsend, Laneshawbridge, purchased by Knavesmire Butchers, York, while Robertshaws Farm Shop, Thornton, picked up a quality 540kg Limousin bullock from F&B Smith, Westhouse, at £1,833, 339.5p/kg. Jeff Pickles, Chapel-le-Dale, sold a heavier bull at £1,818, 313.5p/kg.

The latest fortnightly sale staged yesterday incorporated a special Spring show for beef feeding cows, along with the monthly prime cattle show. A full report will appear in next week’s Herald and online.