Cattle yardings at markets reported by MLA’s NLRS for the 2011-12 fiscal year declined 5% when compared to the previous fiscal year.
While many different factors contributed to the 5% decline in average weekly yardings for 2011-12, the most prominent included: flooding across southern Queensland; producers continuing to retain breeding stock; and most recently, an increased flow of cattle going direct to works.
Weekly cattle yardings for 2011-12 averaged lower across all southern states, as numbers in Queensland averaged 2% higher – albeit compared to a very low 2010-11.
Interestingly for Queensland, the 2% increase was despite a series of cancelled markets during February and March, most notably in Roma and Longreach, as flooding created logistical issues in getting both cattle and buyers to markets.
NSW cattle yardings averaged 5% lower year-on-year, with the main contributor a 26% reduction during March, as flooding restricted sales throughout the state.
Average weekly yardings in Victoria were just below the same period in 2010-11.
Like NSW, flooding was the main reason behind the drop in the numbers offered, especially in the Gippsland region, despite drier conditions in the western region.
SA recorded the largest year-on-year decline, falling 16%, while WA throughput slipped 12% for the year.
The improved seasonal conditions across many areas of the eastern states continued to see producers retaining heifers, with both vealer and yearling heifer weekly average yardings declining 7% year-on-year. In contrast, the vealer and yearling steer numbers for the same period increased 1%.
Average weekly grown steer yardings for 2011-12 declined 2% year-on-year, largely due to greater numbers bypassing the saleyards and going direct to processors.
Cow yardings declined 7% year-on-year, as producers continued to look to retain breeding numbers.
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