Numbers were high for the time of the year at Balla Mart on Saturday last, with nearly 500 heifers making up the 930 cattle on offer, with the breeding heifer sale drawing huge numbers of sellers and buyers.

Activity was brisk around the ring, though online activity was also evident.

Heifers suitable for breeding were the top call of the day, with dealers, northern buyers, specialist in-calf heifer producers and farmers all battling to secure lots.

Lighter store type heifers weighing 350kg to 400kg were the only weight bracket of heifer to average below €3/kg at €2.82/kg, although the top third averaged €3.60/kg.

Heifers from 400kg to 500kg averaged €3.24/kg, with the bottom third trading at a respectable €2.73/kg, while lots from 500kg to 600kg averaged €3.12/kg, with the top third and bottom third averaging €3.74/kg and €2.64/kg respectively.

A small number of heifers over 600kg sold for an average of €3.37/kg, up 34c/kg on the week previous.

Top call in the heifer ring went to a Belgian Blue-cross weighing 640kg selling for €4,450 (€6.95/kg).

Bullocks were back slightly on the week previous for nearly all weight bands, though demand for quality continental types and short-keep lots was still very strong.

Bullocks from 400kg to 500kg averaged €3.11/kg, with more forward-type bullocks from 500kg to 600kg averaging €2.93/kg. Heavy bullocks above 600kg averaged €2.87/kg, with the top and bottom third selling to €3.11/kg and €2.60/kg respectively.

A strong sale of beef cows was also witnessed in the dry cow ring, with close to 100 store and well-fleshed cows meeting firm demand.

Demand and price per kilo was best for good-quality continental types carrying a good cover of flesh, with these types freely making €2.30/kg to €2.60/kg.

Several lots broaching the 800kg mark were sold for €2,000/head and above

Sample prices included an 870kg Simmental-cross dry cow selling for €2,460 (€2.82/kg).

In pictures

This Limousin-cross heifer born November 2021 and weighing 585kg sold for €1,750 (€2.99/kg).

This Limousin-cross heifer born March 2022 and weighing 515kg sold for €1,780 (€3.45/kg).

This Limousin-cross heifer born November 2022 and weighing 510kg sold for €1,580 (€3.09/kg).

This Charolais-cross bull weanling born June 2023 and weighing 370kg sold for €1,170 (€3.10/kg).

This Charolais-cross bullock born June 2023 and weighing 370kg sold for €1,450 (€3.91/kg).

This Limousin-cross bullock born July 2023 and weighing 460kg sold for €1,440 (€3.13/kg).

This Belgian Blue-cross bullock born February 2022 and weighing 615kg sold for €1,720 (€2.79/kg).

This Simmental-cross cow born June 2011 and weighing 695kg sold for €1,480 (€2.13/kg).

This Maine Anjou-cross cow born January 2012 and weighing 815kg sold for €1,950 (€2.39/kg).

This Limousin-cross cow born April 2013 and weighing 665kg sold for €1,690 (€2.54/kg).

This Charolais-cross cow born September 2018 and weighing 760kg sold for €1,760 (€2.31/kg).