Elphin Mart manager Ciarán Lynch said that around 150 weanling bulls went through the ring at the venue on Monday evening, with 80 weanling heifers and 40 dry cows also offered.

Weanling bulls were dear, averaging around €3.60/kg, with both shippers and farmers buying.

The heifers made good money too, with mostly farmers making purchases. The weanling heifers averaged €3.30/kg.

Dry feeding cows were a great trade according to Lynch, with prices reaching €3/kg. He believes around 50% of the cows bought were heading the far side of the border.

“Good-quality cattle are getting scarce, as buyers from the North are eager for cattle.”

Trade to pick up

He predicts that trade will pick up in the months ahead and numbers will slacken.

“Cattle will get dear because they’re not there. Good-quality animals will get good money. I don’t know if the numbers will be there at the back end of the year.”

Shop around

Lynch urged farmers to shop around to get the best prices for their animals.

Northern buyers and big feeders have a strong presence around the ring and they want the cattle. He said that, at the moment, farmers are getting better money in the marts than the factories.

The next sale in Elphin is next Monday night, with a heifer, bullock and dry cow sale at 5pm, followed by the sheep sale at 6pm.

Watch: top cattle

Topping the sales was this November 2015-born Parthenaise heifer weighing 835kg, selling for €2,640 (€3.16/kg).

This January 2016-born Belgian Blue heifer weighing 800kg sold for €2,490 (€3.11/kg).

This June 2022-born Charlaois bull weighing 860kg sold for €2,480 (€2.88/kg).

This March 2018-born Limousin heifer weighing 760kg made €2,390 (€3.14/kg).

This November 2018-born Charlaois cow weighing 780kg sold for €2,270 (€2.91/kg).

This April 2019-born Limousin bull weighing 835kg sold for €1,950 (€2.34/kg).

This January 2024-born Charlaois heifer weighing 235kg sold for €880 (€3.74/kg).

This January 2024-born Charlaois heifer weighing 245kg sold for €980 (€4/kg).

This September 2023-born Limousin heifer weighing 250kg sold for €1,020 (€4.08/kg).