For people looking to buy live farm animals, a livestock auction can be an interesting place to begin. Most livestock auctions market almost every kind of farm animal, though some may be restricted according to a breed. They are an easy way to buy large herds, but using an auction can sometimes be confusing if you have never been to one before. Below are some common terms you will hear at livestock auctions.
Head – Slang for a single animal. For example, a herd of 50 head of sheep means there are 50 sheep in the herd. If the animal is being auctioned off by the head, it means an upfront price, as opposed to being sold by weight.
Grass-fed – Important with dairy and beef cattle. This refers to the type of pasture environment the cattle were kept in and the food they were given. Usually cattle are given a mixture of grain and grass, but specially grass-fed cattle can command a higher market price per pound.
Liquidate – These means the owner is getting rid of all his herd. Quality breeding animals can often be bought when a herd is liquidated.
Hog – Slang term for a domesticated pig. An auction will likely use this term for male pigs while females are called sows.
Quarter Horse – A special type of horse that is often used to herd cattle. It gets its name from its agility, where it is often said a Quarter Horse can turn on a quarter.
Pony – A smaller kind of horse. To qualify as a pony the animal must be less than 14 hands high. Hands are a types of measurement used when discussing equine animals.
If you are in the farming industry, a livestock auction can help you to find the best price for animals for your farm. At a livestock auction, you can bid against other shoppers to purchase domestic cattle, sheep, quarter horses and more. During a live market auction, you can buy your animals for a very low price.
Most markets which hold live stock auctions also have cattle, pigs, ponies and more for sale during the rest of the week. Although the price may not be as low as during the auction, it is still a great way to buy dairy cows and other animals in mass for breeding.
Be on the look out for auction sites that are closing down and need to liquidate all of their inventory. You can have a successful business quarter if you are able to purchase extra animals for breeding or using to make food to sell such as beef steaks and milk.
A steer can be a hot commodity at a live stock auction as they can be expensive. If you have a family friendly farm be on the look out for animals that children will enjoy. Hogs can be impressive to see. A pony is always a great addition to a farm. You can charge for pony rides to make extra income.
Don't leave the market without looking for supplies for your barn. You can find grain, feed and other items to make your animals' living environment more comfortable at reasonable prices. You can also buy fencing to help enclose your cows in a pasture.
If you have never been to a livestock auction, you are missing out on the chance to find great deals for your farm.