Tuam Mart’s sheep sale held on Tuesday evening recorded a lower entry than normal of 540 head.
Manager Marian Devane said the lower entry stemmed from some farmers who would normally present sheep on a weekly basis at this time of year taking advantage of the fine weather to complete field work.
The trade for lambs remains under pressure, with this driven by a sharp reduction in factory quotes.
Despite this negative price pressure, there was a high clearance rate of 98% recorded.
As the photos demonstrate, the general run of prices for lambs weighing 45kg to 49kg ranged from €120 to €126 or from €2.50/kg liveweight for medium-quality lambs to €2.75/kg for better-quality types.
A selection of top-quality lambs sold to €130 to €133, with a couple of pens of ewe lambs attracting attention from farmer buyers and securing a premium over factory prices.
Lambs weighing 42kg to 44kg sold from €112 for lots with a lower cover of flesh to €118 to €120 for lambs with a better cover of flesh and higher kill-out potential.
The number of store lambs appearing is low to-date, with many producers in the region operating a typical mid-season production system, lambing from mid-March onwards and now approaching weaning. Numbers are expected to build gradually in the coming weeks.
Prices for forward store lambs weighing 38kg to 40kg ranged from €88 to a top of €100, with lambs with a good cover of flesh exceeding the €100 per head mark.
Lambs weighing in the region of €35kg to 36kg sold from €85 to the mid €90s, while a few pens of well-presented lambs weighing 30kg to 31kg sold around the €80 to €82 mark.
The cull ewe trade has been buoyant in recent weeks.
A lower entry of ewes and in particular an absence of heavy fleshed ewes that would have pushed prices upwards of €170 meant these prices were not recorded on the evening.
The trade, however, was every bit as strong for the type of ewe on offer, with a top price of €166 recorded for ewes weighing 92kg.
Ewes weighing 80kg to 85kg sold from €120 to €140 plus while ewes weighing in the region of 75kg averaged around the €110 to €115 mark.