Shares of Central Garden & Pet ( CENT) slid Monday after the lawn- and pet-supplies seller warned that it will report a first-quarter loss, missing its prior projection for break-even results.

Central Garden & Pet estimated a loss of 12 cents to 14 cents a share for the quarter ended Dec. 31. Analysts polled by Thomson Financial had forecast a break-even quarter.

"The reasons for the earnings outlook revision for the quarter were a late-quarter shift in seasonal purchases by lawn and garden retailers, lower sales and mix shift within pet bird and small-animal products and higher-than-previously-anticipated grain costs," said Glenn Novotny, president and chief executive, in a statement.

The company estimated first-quarter sales of $320 million, below Wall Street's forecast of $336 million.

Central Garden & Pet said it has "strong listings" for 2007 and it is raising prices to offset the higher grain costs.

Shares recently were trading down $4.82, or 10%, at $43.97.

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