The Mayo Mule and Greyface Group held its annual two-day sale in Aurivo Mart, Ballinrobe, on Friday 20 and Saturday 21 August.
After a record-breaking sale in 2020, which saw the average ewe lamb price paid up €28/head on the previous year, it was always going to be a difficult act to follow.
However, from the outset, trade was brisk and prices were, on the whole, in line with last year.
The first-prizewinning Mule ewe lambs, weighing 49.5kg, were sold for €230/head.
Heavier lambs throughout the sale were met with strong demand, with very few selling below €160, with the €200 mark breached on several occasions and a top price of €260 on the day.
Ewe lambs weighing 40kg to 44kg traded from €135 to €170 for the most part, with sharper-headed examples fetching the upper end of this bracket.
Lighter lambs were more variable. However, there were still good prices on offer for lambs with a bit of style about them, making up to €150 in some cases, while plainer types traded from €115 to €125 for the most part.
It was in this weight bracket where most of the unsold lambs came from, with exhibitors choosing to hold them back for another day out later in the year.
Overall, the ewe lambs averaged €151, with a 92% clearance rate.
The hogget sale on Friday saw an entry of almost 950 head. Again, trade was good, if not exceptional. The sale achieved an 84% clearance and an average price of €205/head.
Decent-quality lots traded from €185 to €220 for the most part with a top price of €310 paid on the day.
Commenting on the two days, group committee member David Prendergast said: “The buyers were once again treated to a superb show of hoggets and ewe lambs, which was reflected in the prices.
“Online trading has been a huge help to the sale over the last two years, with one purchaser tuning in from New Zealand.
“Our delivery service continues to increase in popularity, with sheep sold and delivered to 19 counties across the country.”
He said that, overall, exhibitors were very pleased with the level of trade and while the group is always looking to improve, the sale averages were still excellent.
The group will hold a second sale in Ballinrobe on 6 September at 6pm.