CHICAGO, Feb 21 (Reuters) - Chicago Mercantile Exchange live cattle futures closed mostly higher on Wednesday, supported by tight U.S. cattle supplies and position-squaring ahead of a monthly cattle feedlot report due later this week, traders said.

The benchmark April live cattle contract settled up 0.375 cent at 187.700 cents per pound after reaching 188.900 cents, its highest since Nov. 3.

Feeder cattle futures closed narrowly mixed, with the most-active March contract down 0.025 cent at 251.350 cents per pound and April up 0.575 cent at 255.925 cents.

Ahead of the U.S. Department of Agriculture's monthly Cattle on Feed report due Friday, analysts surveyed by Reuters on average expect the government to report that placements of cattle into U.S. feedlots during January fell 11.6% from a year earlier.

The U.S. cattle herd has dwindled to its smallest level in more than seven decades after drought in recent years reduced the amount of pasture for grazing.

Beef packers struggling with negative margins are slowing the pace of slaughter this week. Wednesday's cattle slaughter totaled 120,000 head, the USDA reported, and the week-to-date count of 349,000 head is down from 363,000 head a week ago and 353,247 head a year ago.

CME hog futures ended narrowly mixed. Benchmark April lean hogs settled up 0.300 cent at 85.975 cents per pound, while June hogs ended down 0.200 cent at 97.975 cents.

The CME's Lean Hog Index, a two-day weighted average of cash prices, rose to 76.80 cents per pound, its highest reading since Nov. 8.

(Reporting by Julie Ingwersen; Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)