The rise in number of Friesian calves saw a levelling off of price for them from the heights of the previous fortnight. Farmers remained active for the stronger Friesian calf and this saw prices for those anging from €85 to €165.

While there's little activity yet in the shipping trade, export-type calves were making between €55 and €90.

Beef breeds

There is still a fire lit under prices for beef calves, with Angus and Hereford bull calf prices ranging from €220/head up to €425/head.

Heifers of the same breeds mainly sold for between €200 and €380. There was a small number that sold below that price range and they were generally a lighter type of calf. Supply of those crosses is helping keep prices at a high level for those.

Similarly with continental calves, they were a bit harder to find in the yard this week but come ring time they shone.

Both bull and heifer continental calves sold for between €350/head and €470/head, with an odd exception below that range.

Number surge expected

Buyers and sellers are adapting to online and prices are holding firm for the most part. Speaking after the sale, mart manager, Tom McCarthy was happy with proceedings.

"Numbers are up but you'd really notice that it is stronger calves coming into the mart. Most calves are over three weeks and you can see, farmers are really maximising their calf value by selling at between three and six weeks of age. That is showing in the prices they are receiving.

"I was comparing the national number of calvings between 2020 and this year earlier this morning and by 29 January there were about 10,200 extra calves born compared to the same time last year. That's a big lift and sales will ramp up significantly from here on.

I'd be expecting to see over 1,000 calves here within the next two week."

With calf numbers rising rapidly, next week's calf sale in Bandon mart will take place at the earlier time of 10.30am.

This pair of three-week-old Charolais heifers made €435.

This three-week-old continental bull calf sold for €295.

Born in mid-November, these Angus heifers made €305/each.

Just under three weeks, this pair of Hereford bulls averaged €280.

This trio of 16-day-old Hereford heifer calves averaged €295.

This month-old bull calf sold for €285.

This month-old bull calf sold for €140.

This group of month-old bull calves sold for an average of €70.

Almost a month old, this Belgian Blue heifer made €330.

These five-week-old Angus bull calves sold for €385.

These 17-day-old bull calves averaged €60.

Just over three weeks, this Simmental cross bull calf made €430.

This group of 25-day-old bull calves went under the hammer for €170 each.

Just short of a month old, this bull calf sold for €425.

This pair of month-old Angus bull calves made €395 each.

A month old, this Hereford bull calf made €385.

Just short of a month old, this bull calf sold for €425.

This pair of Charolais bull calves aged 23 days sold for €465.