Cattle marts report: To make a decent living, it’s boats we should be buying rather than bullocks

I discovered earlier this week that it’s boats we should be buying and not bullocks. It can be very hard to make money out of a bullock, but any old fool could make money out of a boat.

All you have to do is buy them off the state for rock bottom prices, and then sell them on again.

For example, the recent sale of the LE Aisling netted €110,000 for this country, and now the crafty purchaser, two months on, has the very same boat on the market for close to €700,000.

Buying a boat from the state is really the equivalent of buying a bullock at the mart for the price of a calf.

It’s a no-brainer.

Anyway, back to the real world, and we will sail straight for Skibbereen where at Friday’s cattle sale, dry cows sold from €60 to €820 with the kilo. In Skibbereen on Friday Aberdeen Angus and Hereford bullocks sold from €340 to €770 with the weight.



No Breed Sex Weight €

1 Ch steer 485kg 1235

4 AA steers 383kg 885

4 Fr steers 343kg 640

1 BB heifer 525kg 1230

3 Lm heifers 435kg 1280

1 Ch cow 865kg 1680

1 Lm cow 750kg 1340

Continental bullocks in Skibbereen sold from €400 to €800 with the kilo. Friesian bullocks in Skibbereen sold from €220 to €550 with the kilo.

Heifers in Skibbereen sold from €300 to €650 with their weight. In Skibbereen weanling bulls made from €360 to €500 with the kilo.

And so keeping matters nautical — or at the very least staying on a watery theme — the arrival of the rain here in the south on Saturday was as welcome as the postman with the last of our (long overdue) GLAS payments.

The ground had gone hard, the grass had stopped growing, even the hair on my head had become decidedly scraggy and sparse.

On the land we had been getting plenty of heat, but were beat from the lack of moisture.

We were a bit like your man on the commercial all those years ago who used to be yearning after Sally O’Brien and for his pint of Harp. We were burnt out.

But now because of the rain, the grass has started to grow and the mart trade will certainly benefit from it.

Stability being the key word. And sure who knows, perhaps even my hair might take off once again. I could well resemble a Bee Gee by the end of the year.



No Breed Sex Weight €

2 Ch steers 435kg 1100

2 Lm steers 365kg 910

3 Hr steers 590kg 1275

5 AA steers 355kg 900

2 Ch heifers 565kg 1210

1 Lm heifer 335kg 915

1 Hr cow 820kg 1490

And in a thankful frame of mind, we go next to Macroom Mart where before the cattle sale on Saturday the proceeds from a recent charity auction were presented to three worthy causes. 

Marymount Hospice, Crumlin Hospital and Temple Street Children’s Hospital were the benefactors from the charity auction held in Macroom mart just before Christmas.

A total of €20,580 had been raised at the event, which saw livestock and other items donated by farmers and local businesses auctioned off.

On Saturday, Cork Co-Op Marts auctioneer Jerh O’Sullivan thanked all who had attended, supported and helped out with the successful sale. So it wasn’t too surprising then that the rain fell. What goes around comes around.

And keeping with Macroom mart on Saturday, dry cows sold from €60 to €670 over the kilo. Continental bullocks made from €305 to €710 over the kilo. Hereford and Aberdeen Angus bullocks sold from €250 to €715 over their weight. Heifers sold from €250 to €680 over their weight.



No Breed Sex Weight €

3 Lm steers 367kg 950

2 Hr steers 340kg 705

7 Ch steers 527kg 1165

1 BB steer 520kg 1160

1 Hr heifer 485kg 1050

2 Ch heifers 440kg 1005

1 Lm cow 495kg 1010

There was a smaller sale of cattle in Kilmallock on Monday, with prices remaining firm. The mart had 1300 stock, including 500 calves on offer. Denis Kirby of Kilmallock mart reported that “prices continue to be very strong with exporters and buyers from Northern Ireland competing with the Republic of Ireland farmers for stock.

In Kilmallock bullocks sold for up to €2.59 per kg. Weanlings hit €2.91 per kg. Dry cows sold for up to €1.96 per kg. Heifers sold to a high of €2.81 per kg. Dairy stock hit €1,450. 

And in the suckler ring a 10 year old pedigree Limousin cow and her Limousin bull calf sold for €2,050. Calves made up to €460 (paid for a five-week-old Hereford bull).

On this Saturday, May 20, a sale of organic cattle takes place at Kilmallock mart. This sale begins at 11am and will have 200 organically reared cattle on offer — including some pedigree stock.



No Breed Sex Weight €

3 BB steers 366kg 920

3 Lm steers 331kg 740

5 AA steers 529kg 1200

6 Hr steers 392kg 850

5 Ch heifers 368kg 850

1 Lm cow 815kg 1530

1 Ch cow 720kg 1420

Calf numbers in Bandon mart on Monday were similar to the previous week with 1100 calves on offer. 

Calf prices also saw little change with Friesian bulls selling from €80 to €150 a head and runners making up to €300 a piece. Dry cows in Bandon mart sold from €100 to €715 with the kilo.

Aberdeen Angus and Hereford bullocks made from €350 to €700 with the weight. Continental bullocks sold from €400 to €750 with the kilo. Friesian bullocks in Bandon made from €200 to €510 with the kilo. Heifers in Bandon sold from €280 to €715 with their weight.



No Breed Sex Weight €

8 AA steers 550kg 1155

1 Ch steer 415kg 1035

1 Sim steer 580kg 1195

1 Hr heifer 570kg 1220

1 Ch heifer 475kg 1125

1 Ch cow 695kg 1440

1 Fr cow 790kg 1390

Corrin mart on Tuesday had 1,200 stock on offer.

Corrin mart manager, Sean Leahy, reported: “A good strong trade for bullocks, with an excellent demand for quality lots.”

Sean also reported that the mart saw a good trade for heifers and dry cows, with fleshy dry cows in demand.

In Corrin mart, bullocks sold from €100 to €580 with their weight, with beef bullocks making up to €720 with the kilo. Store heifers sold from €240 to €450 with the weight with butcher types making up to €800.



No Breed Sex Weight €

3 Lim steers 516kg 1160

4 Ch steers 512kg 1090

3 Hr steers 510kg 990

2 Lim heifers 610kg 1310

4 AA heifers 491kg 1070

1 Fr cow 650kg 1190

1 AA cow 650kg 1150

And finally for this week we go to our friends at Kanturk mart and to mart manager Seamus O’Keeffe who gave us this summing up: “On Tuesday we saw 920 cattle going through the mart, with a flying trade for all types.”

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