Prices have stayed high and mostly steady throughout the winter at the Middleburg Livestock Auction weekly hay sale in central Pennsylvania.

Alfalfa hay has been selling in the $200-300/ton range, with occasional loads at $350-375/ton, reports auction owner Bill Weist. “Those prices are for second- or third-cutting, grass-alfalfa mixed hay that’s of interest to both horse owners and dairy producers.

“Typically, a lot of our dairy farmers bring in Western hay. But that’s just not available this year. They’re depending more on local supplies.”

Good first-cutting grass hay has been selling for $250-300/ton. Compared to what it was a year ago, the price is up by $50-70/ton. “The fancy stuff is kind of scarce right now; there’s just not a whole lot of it coming in,” says Weist.

He looks for prices to remain steady over the next month or so. “There’s still a lot of hay out there waiting to move to market. But a lot depends on the weather. If we get into March and people can get their animals out on pasture, it will lessen demand for grass hay.”

Middleburg Livestock Auction holds its 11:30 a.m., Tuesday hay auctions year-round. Weist can be contacted at 570-837-2222 or bill@middleburglivestock.com.