Roscrea Mart’s sheep sale on Wednesday witnessed a firm appetite from butcher and wholesale buyers for top-quality fleshed lambs.

A selection of heavier lambs weighing from 50kg liveweight to as high as 58kg generated active bidding, with prices for these lambs ranging from €168 to a top of €174 paid for a pen of super-quality lambs weighing 58kg.

A selection of lambs weighing 48kg to 50kg sold from €150 to €160 on average, with a couple of lots of aged and plainer-quality lambs in this weight bracket falling below the €150 mark.

Factory lambs

The trade for factory weight lambs weighing 43kg to 46kg was affected somewhat from the recent pressure on factory prices, but Central Auctions manager Michael Harty said demand remained solid, with agents keen to get their hands on similar numbers.

Prices for these lambs averaged in the region of €140 to €148, with a couple of lots of 43kg lambs with a lower cover of flesh or kill-out potential selling back to €136.

There was only a handful of hoggets on offer, with quality mixed. Hoggets weighed from 50kg to 80kg, with prices following an equally wide range from €130 to €160.

Solid cull ewe trade

Michael commented that sheep farmers are having a positive year to date, with early lamb producers getting the majority of their lambs away without a collapse in price for the first year in some time.

Their mood is also helped by an excellent cull ewe trade, with prices for heavy ewes particularly sharp and ranging from €170 to €183 for a few lots of large-framed heavy ewes weighing from 100kg to 110kg.

Lighter ewes weighing in the region of 80kg to 90kg sold from €130 to €140, with ewes in the mid-70kg to 80kg weight range selling from €120 to €128.

In pictures

This pen of ewes with a mixed cover of flesh and weighing 78kg sold for €126.

These medium-weight fleshed ewes weighing 84kg sold for €140.

These three large-framed and heavily fleshed ewes weighing 100kg sold for €177.

This single Texel-cross ewe weighing 110kg topped the cull ewe prices at €183.

These three ewe lambs weighing 52kg sold for €164.

This heavy single Suffolk lamb weighing 71kg sold for €155.

This pen of mixed-quality hoggets weighing 60kg sold for €131.

These Texel-cross lambs weighing 43kg and gone a little dry in the wool sold for €143.

These two Texel hoggets weighing 57kg sold for €150.

This pen of Suffolk lambs weighing 44kg sold for €145.

This pair of quality fleshed lambs weighing 50kg sold for €169.

These six well-conformed and fleshed lambs weighing 57kg sold for €172.

These four heavy hoggets weighing 80kg sold for €159.

This pair of Charollais-cross ram lambs weighing 45kg sold for €145.

This batch of mainly Suffolk lambs weighing 47kg sold for €148.

These Suffolk lambs weighing 44kg sold for €144.

This batch of 43kg Charollais-cross lambs sold for €139.