A REDUCED entry of 3,346 prime hoggs hit trading levels seen only several weeks earlier when selling to an overall average of £94.63 per head, or 189.8p/kg on Monday, March 23.

The smarter end achieved 250p/kg-plus, up to a top of 318p/kg or section top £118 per head) for Beltex lambs from Walter and Rob Parkinson, of Garstang The leading per head price of £122 fell to a Texel pen from Hayley Baines, of Gisburn. Both price-topping pens joined Knavesmire Butchers in York.

Handier weight nice lambs could make 220-240p/kg, while a commercial handy weight was 180-215p/kg. Several pens of butchers-type sheep weighing in at 50kg-plus achieved £110 to £115, though a commercial heavy lamb was 170-195p/kg.

Beltex lambs averaged £100.50 per head, or 257.6p/kg, and Texels £87.49, or 194.3p/kg. Detailed breed prices and averages are at www.ccmauctions.com

Cast sheep numbers actually increased, the 481 cull ewes and rams just over 100 more than the previous Monday. Cull ewes averaged £58.37, with a top of £117.50 per head for a Texel pen from Linton’s Tom Boothman. Cast rams averaged £67.06.

Another good turnout of 739 breeding sheep saw the 261 outfits of ewes with lambs on offer sell readily to 13 buyers ringside.

In fact, all looked well sold, with older ewes with twins in the region of £50-£60 per life, the best end of Continental ewes with twins getting away around £230-£260, with Continental ewes with slightly younger lambs just reaching above £200, up to £230.

Topping the trade at £260 per outfit with some cracking Texel ewes with pairs of lambs at foot were Frankland Farms in Rathmell.

Hard-farmed crossed ewes averaging 1.7 lambs on them sold away at £140-£170, ewes with single lambs getting away into the £65-£70 per life bracket.

Skipton’s livestock sales manager Ted Ogden commented: “We will wait to see how government policy changes this next week and what effect it has on marketing. However, please do not hesitate to contact an auctioneer at any point if you want to discuss selling at any of our sales. Please remember, we are on hand to advise.”