Keosauqua Sales Co. Inc

March 2019  03/05/19 10:38:00 AM

            It’s been a very nice week of spring like weather here.  We have been in the 50’s & sunny part of the week.  We had just a light shower of rain Saturday night into Sunday.   The forecast is calling for temperatures into the 60’s and a chance of rain on Thursday.   The rest of the week looks like it will be very nice.  Colby was able to haul a couple loads of manure today and it sure did not track up the field.  We sure need to get that thing running everyday for a while!
            Saturday was an extremely busy day!  There was an enormous crowd in town for the sale and traffic got backed up both ways, clear south to almost the hospital.  There were many trucks and trailers trying to get to the barn to either unload or park and come in to watch the sale.   The parking lot was loaded to the gills with hay and honestly there was only room to drive in and out to unload stock.  At about 10:45 seemed to be the heaviest traffic.   Fellas needing to unload didn’t have room to get off the highway with the line from the chutes reaching the highway.   Some trucks were just remaining on the highway waiting their turn to get in one of the driveways.  That made it so regular traffic just going thru couldn’t get thru and they were backed up in the same line as the trailers.  I was trying to keep things moving inside when the office receives the call from local law enforcement, “we have a traffic problem on highway 1 around the sale barn, can you have Bill do something about it?”  What I did was get to selling as fast as I could to get folks loaded and back out as best we could!  I don’t think that’s what they were thinking, but it’s all I could do anyway.   Traffic got loosened up, probably not as fast as some of the folks would have liked that were saluting trailers on the way by, but hopefully they calmed down and maybe will choose a different route on Saturdays!
            The hog market was lower on sows at just a $41 top on a shorter run.  The fat hogs were in the $38 to 44 range and pigs were from 50¢ to almost a dollar a lb. if a couple of people thought they needed a particular set.  I was expecting fat hogs to jump up a bit more after the strong move in Chicago last week, but it didn’t arrive in Keosauqua just yet.
            The sheep and goat market had 500 head this week.  Lambs are softer and goats are steady to higher.   Selling bottle baby dairy goats got to be a challenge with a big run for the fourth week in a row.  It has folks kinda full that are trying to raise them.  Those 35 to 45-pound fat boer kids were in the $120 to 150 per head range.  50 to 70-pound kids ranged from $140 to 200 this week.  Lighter lambs sold up to $2.35 per lb. and a package of bred black face ewe lambs brought $190 per head.   There was a big crowd in the barn for the sheep and goat sale.
            The outside sale was beautiful at 11 when we went to work trying to get some room!   The small squares of hay sold from $4 to 9 on one stack of pretty grass hay.   The straw eased up to a $3.50 to 5.50 per bale range in the warmer weather.  We had a real large offering of big bales this week, selling almost 800 bales.  The market seemed to ease up slightly.  Most of the better net wrapped dry hay would sell from $80 to 95.   Some inside alfalfa hay sold at $120 and some plain quality hay was in the $60 to 75 area.   Big squares of 3x3x8 grass and some alfalfa hay held at $60 to 85 per bale.   Wet wrapped rye and wheat bales dropped the most, ranging from $30 to 40 per bale.   Corn stalk round bales brought $50. 
            The hedge post market was pretty good again on decent quality.   There was a mess of puppies and rabbits and I think we got all of them sold!  A two-horse old bumper hitch trailer and an old work car also found new homes outside this week.
            The cattle sale sure carried stronger momentum on mostly unweaned all-natural type cattle.   Bred cows were sure in sold demand, but weigh cows were off $2 to 5 this week. 
            We loaded out hay and everything most of the day Sunday.   Gabe made another overnight run to northwest Nebraska.  He dropped a bull off at Gordon, then reloaded bulls at Rushville and came thru Lincoln, dropping off one Marcy Angus Bull for Tom.  He got back home around midnight Monday night.  He had a good trip and didn’t get into any high water or road closures.
            I got the last two calves today out of the Herefords.  Thankful for that and glad for them all to be up and growing well.
            A regular sale again this week.  It’s kinda hard to believe a regular sale can get as big as last week however!  Will look forward to what comes this week!
Have a Dandy Week!

            Our part of the country has had a really nice week of spring like weather.  I sure know there are places in the country that would like to go back to the winter they thought was horrible after what they are going thru this past week.  Folks, Eastern and Northeast Nebraska is a very serious mess.   Much of South Dakota and parts of North Dakota have suffered unthinkable livestock losses thru the storm last week.   We continue to keep those ranchers and their families in our prayers.   We are forecast to have a nice week of temperatures up in the 50’s and lows in the upper 30’s.   Most of our frost is gone and the ground conditions are improving every day.   Gravel roads have even got so you don’t need 4-wheel drive to get thru!
            Saturday was a very pretty day.  We had sunshine and no wind and close to 50°.  The hog run was pretty big again this week getting close to 300 head.   The market was steady to softer.  Sows topped out at $46 and several brought $43 to 45.  Fat hogs held in the range of $36 to 42.  The pigs seemed to lose the most in the market with 40 pounders selling from $25 to 34 a head. 
            The sheep and goat sale had 500 head and the market was sure steady to better.   Bottle baby lambs ranged from $25 to 60 per head.   Baby goats that were dairy cross sold from $5 to 20.  The 40 to 60-pound kids sold from $2.50 to 3 per lb.  Lambs from 60 to 80 pounds continue to see the strongest demand bringing from $2.30 to 2.60 per lb.  There were not many fat lambs in the market.  Old ewes and bucks were steady with the past couple of weeks.
            The outside sale had a dang nice run of hay and very good demand from a big crowd.   Small squares sold from $4.50 to 7.50.  the straw was steady at $5.50 to 7.50 per bale.  Big round bales were selling about the same, mostly $90 to 120.  We had a little at $150 and a little at $60 on some rougher hay.  Big squares sold mostly $70 to 90.  The post market was up, and the quality was sure better.   Good lines made it over $20 and the top corners were at $40.  Firewood is slowing up and demand dropping as the temperatures warm up.
            The cattle sale saw over 1100 feeders this week.   Demand is just starting to break loose as spring draws closer.   Baby calves ranged from $200 to 400 on the best calves and $30 to 85 on the dairy calves.   Not much in the sale this week for bred cows and pairs.   Feeder cattle are showing some strength even though a very large part of the cattle feeding country is being affect by flood and all kinds of infrastructure trouble.   The run was made up largely of cattle over 650 pounds.  The better 7 weight heifers sold from $1.30 to 1.35, while the steer mates sold up to $1.50.  A nice load of 898-pound steers brought $1.32.   Weigh cows were steady on 85 head.
            I had a chance Friday to slip over to the Graystone Cattle Co Red Angus production sale held at the farm near Stockport, IA.   Sunday, I went over to the K7 Hereford bull sale at Lockridge, IA.  Both sales had a nice offering of breeding stock selling across the country to both commercial and purebred breeders.   The top Red Angus heifers brought $5000 and the top Hereford lot was a bull going to MI.   Congratulations to both outfits on good sales!
            We are looking at a regular sale this coming week and March 30th.   The next feeder special is April 6th.
Have a Dandy Week!

            Yesterday and especially today our area just took on a whole new feeling.  We have had two days above freezing and beautiful sunshine that has folks believing we have made it thought the long, cold and much hated winter on 2019!  Temperatures hit nearly 40° here Monday afternoon.   The forecast is calling for nearly 60° on Wednesday and not below freezing much all week long.  We don’t have any snow on the ground and all the rain we received on Saturday combined with this warm week our frost will go out in quick fashion.   I am not sure that is a good thing, but we have to get it out before we can get the grass started.  Hopeful for everyone that the mud won’t last to long and we can get right into a truly awesome spring!
            Saturday was a nasty, rotten, cold rainy day around here.   The rain started about 7 a.m. and rained until noon and some again in the afternoon.   You sure couldn’t tell it by the run of livestock or the giant crowd we had here for the sale! 
The hog sale led off right at start time and we had nearly 300 head without many feeder pigs.  The market was a couple of dollars lower than last week.  The top sows sold in the $45 to 46 range.   The top fat hogs brought $44.  The highlight of the hog sale was two Hampshire pigs that weighed 35 pounds.  They were a nice pair that a couple of fellas decided they had to have, and the little devils sold at $145 per head!  They were sure a dandy pair of pigs!
            The sheep and goat sale had a very large run for the nasty day, selling nearly 600 head.   Bottle lambs sold up to $55 per head and boer cross bottle kids went from $15 to 50.  The dairy babies brought from $1 on the lowest to over $20 on the best.   40-pound fat kids sold for over $3 a lb. and the 50-70 pound lambs held strong at $2.50 to 2.60 a lb.   A package of 3-4-year-old boer does close to kidding brought $385. 
            It rained nearly the whole time we were outside.  There was water standing everywhere and some of it was over ankle deep and cold!  We had a good-sized gathering out front needing hay, so they stood in the elements and purchased hay.   The small square bales sold from $4 to 6.50.   No little straw bales this week.   Big rounds sold mostly $90 to 130.  Some rough string tied CRP type hay sold at $40.   Big squares 3x3x8 ranged $70 to 95 per bale.  Firewood ranged from $6 to a load on the trailer and the little pickup box trailer together brought $160.  The portable shed brought $1700 this week.  Thank goodness there were no puppies or rabbits out there this week, they would have needed life jackets!
            The cattle sale started with a big crowd on hand for the baby calves and the bred cows.   The top baby calf sold for $500, while most were $300 to 400.   Holstein calves brought from$40 to 70 this week.   We saw a very strong increase in interest of bred cows at this sale.  No real draw in the cows, but very active bidding on all the cows offered.   Even longhorn cows had increased demand, selling the first pair at $800!  Weigh cows were steady to $2 higher with a $65 top cow and many cows from $58 to 62. 
            Sunday was a really nice day.  It was frozen up early to get chores done.  I was scheduled to be in Ames at a Hereford board meeting, but it was postponed so I went back to Keosauqua to load out.   The combination of cold weather and now the rain has the back of the sale barn in as bad a mess as I have seen in 30 years.   The guys haven’t been able to get the pens cleaned up that well.  Then all the rain we got wasn’t able to flow in the usual manner and it came in the barn making it an absolute sloppy mess.  I am very hopeful the boys can get it scrapped out and thawed out to let the next rain go down the alleys it normally does. 
            Baby calves at the farm are sure enjoying the sunshine and milder temperatures.  They are outside tails up over their backs enjoying life.  Then this afternoon, they are all beached out soaking up the sun again.
            I am hoping to finish up my selection of AI sires this week and we are putting the calendar together to start the process all over again next month.
            There is a good run of feeder calves coming in next Saturday.
Have a Dandy Week!

            Temperatures fell off below zero again this weekend as another cold blast settled across the country.  We didn’t get any snow this week just cold.  We had all the rain last weekend that ran in and thru the back of the sale barn as it took all the snow off the roof.  We had water in several pens that didn’t get a chance to drain out before it froze.  So, we have a number of pens in the old part of the barn that froze full of ice.   It has been quite a winter for sure.  The forecast sounds like we are going to warm up a little towards the weekend and see a chance of rain.  I saw three skunks hit on the highway in different spots last Friday.  Coffee shop fellas say six weeks after you see the first skunk you will be planting corn!  Boy, do I hope they get this one right!
            Saturday’s sale was sure cold, but the roads were clear, and folks were able to move to market goods.   The hog sale had sows up to $44 and fat hogs about $44 for a top.   We had almost 300 hogs and very few feeder pigs.
            The sheep and goat markets were steady to higher this week on just less than 400 head.   Bottle lambs sold $30 to 65 per head and baby goats sold from $5 to 15 on dairy kids and up to $70 on a stout boer kid.   A set of bred boer does sold for $235.   They were 3 to 6 years old in nice condition.   40 to 50-pound kids sold over $3 a lb. for the good yielding fat type.   Light lambs in the 60-pound range brought $2.50 to 2.75 a lb.  There is a nice group of bred boer nannies coming to the sale this from Downing, MO.
            The outside sale was loaded with hay again.  Small squares had very high demand with the majority bringing $5 to 7 and a few piles at $8 to 9 per bale.   The nice straw sold from $6 to 7.50 again this week as animal caretakers do this best to keep there livestock as comfortable as they can thru this weather.  Big round bales were steady to higher this week.   Most of the bales that held their wrap on so you could haul it would sell for $95 to 140.   The rough hay and hay that had wrap issues from bring froze down or together ranged from $40 to 70.  Straw in big bales sold well at $70 for rounds and $ 55 to 60 for big squares.   Corn stalks bales were $40 to 60 per bale.  Posts and firewood sold steady with the past several weeks.  A pet carrier with three puppies created some interest.  They were pretty good-looking Aussie cocker spaniel and brought $40 apiece.  
            The cattle sale ended up with 1300 head.   Baby calves sold for $300 to 400 on the nice beef calves and $30 to 80 on the dairy types.   There were 30 to 40 head of bred cows of random age and pregnancy.  There was not near the interest in cows that we saw last week but the quality was not close.  Most cows were a little thin and over 8 years old.  They were in the $650 to 900 per head range.   Feeders had solid interest with order buyers doing the bulk of procurement this week.   Cattle was sent to Nebraska, Kansas, Colorado, Missouri and Iowa feedlots out of this sale.  Very strong interest in 6 weight steers again this sale.  With fat cattle trade hovering at $1.30, cattle over 750 looks like they have good returns for those with room and pen space to handle them.  Weigh cows and bulls were another buck or two higher this week on a run of over 100 head.  The top cows brought $60 to 65 while the thin and low yielding cows were in the $40’s.   The top bull made it up to $84. 
            Sunday, I hurried thru chores and took off to Ames to a Hereford board meeting.  I got up past Eddyville and called to visit with the President and found out the meeting was not until the next weekend!  So, I turned around and went back to the barn and loaded hay the rest of the day.  I let myself get tricked into thinking our meeting was Sunday after a conversation earlier in the week about changing the meeting date because of the bad weather.   Then I got a text that the meeting was left on the scheduled date.  Well, shoot I fell into thinking Sunday was going to be kinda cold and nasty and I was thinking we were moving to another weekend with better weather.  When really the meeting was to be the 10th.  Now why in the world would you be thinking about changing a meeting because of weather two weeks before hand.  Shoot, I wouldn’t usually check the forecast for more than 48 hours ahead if you want to be halfway close.  Oh well I will be ready to go next week anyway.
            Gabe made a run to Thedford NE last week.  He delivered the heifer we sold at the Beef Expo and brought back some yearling heifers I purchased at the Hoffman sale.  The trip went well, and he is already making plans for the next trip to Gordon NE to drop a bull at Western Sire service and pick up Angus bulls from Tom Marcy to clean up our commercial heifers with. 
            Next week I will be talking about how nice it has warmed up, I promise!
Have a Dandy Week!
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