Record amount of cattle move through Mid-MO auction

The owner of a mid-Missouri auction barn says persistent drought conditions combined with high prices has brought a record number of cattle to auction.

Jack Harrison with Callaway Livestock Center tells Brownfield at one of the biggest sales of the year in early June they moved about 400 cattle more than the same sale last year.

“The 500 pound steers, a lot of them, sold for $290 to $305.50. I sold some big yearling steers that brought $210.25.

The U.S. Drought Monitor says nearly 87% of Missouri is experiencing dry conditions and extreme drought is expanding in the central part of the state. USDA says forage and pastureland supplies are 62% short to very short.

Harrison says the tonnage of hay that’s being mowed in central Missouri isn’t great, ponds are drying up and if consistent rains don’t come soon, producers will continue to sell.

“Some producers have sold 20% of their herd and if it doesn’t rain, they’ll sell 50% and a few of them will sell completely out.”

He says many producers are doing what they can to keep the best cattle in their herds.

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