Ampertaine Sherry is the Limousin golden girl at 22,000gns at Ballymena

On Saturday, August 20, the NI Limousin Cattle Club celebrated the 50th anniversary of the British Limousin Cattle Society with an Elite Sale of pedigree Limousins in Ballymena Livestock Market.

For this one off event, lots had been pre-selected and catalogued representing the very best of modern and classic blood lines.

Twenty-two lots then passed successfully under the hammer of invited auctioneer James Little, in front of a packed sales ring with buyers from across GB and Ireland present. New sales records were also achieved by Limousin bulls and females at official sales in Northern Ireland.

Leading the trade at 22,000gns and setting a new record for the sale of cattle at the centre was the November 2021 born heifer calf Ampertaine Sherry from the renowned herd of W J and James McKay, Maghera, Co Londonderry. Drawing strong interest before the sale, Sherry is by the prolific Ampertaine Elgin and out of a terrific young home bred cow Ampertaine Orchid. Sherry also has Elgin Rossignol and Vantastic in her breeding. Bidding for this young heifer climbed swiftly with the final nod going to Owen Miskelly, Ballynahinch, Co Down.

Overall Champion Jalex Resta 12,000gns

Three animals followed on 12,000gns. First of those through the ring was the overall champion from the pre-sale show earlier in the day Jalex Resta. This powerful September 2020 born heifer, showing muscle and plates from the start and with myostatin genotype double Q204X was from James Alexander, Randalstown, Co Antrim. By Trueman Natkingcole and out of the dam Haltcliffe Hesta, at Balmoral Show in May this year, Resta stood first in her class and was part of the champion group of three and five. Resta also returns home with Owen Miskelly, Ballynahinch.

Second in the ring at 12,000gns was the heifer Ronick Sopretty from Trevor Shields, Kilkeel, Co Down. Born April 2021 and with myostatin genotype double Q204X, Sopretty is sired by Westpit Nando and out of the dam Ronick Maho. Sopretty was purchased as a calf at foot with her dam for 7,800gns at the Ronick production sale on 31 July 2021. Keen bidding resulted in the final tap going again to Owen Miskelly, Ballynahinch.

The final lot through the ring and selling for 12,000gns was Bernish Tinajodi home bred by Kieran McCrory, Sixmilecross, Co Tyrone. Born June 2022 and with a proven pedigree, this heifer calf is sired by Foxhillfarm Ourbest and out of the dam Bernish Jodifortune, an Ampertaine Elgin daughter. Tinajodi was purchased by Mark McKinstry, Crumlin, Co Antrim.

Also selling for five figures at 11,000gns was Ashmara Sheba the reserve overall champion from the pre-sale show and home bred by Neil Martin, Dromara, Co Down. September 2021 born and with myostatin genotype double Q204X, Sheba is a full sister to Charlotte’s Sapphire who sold at the BLCS 50th anniversary national sale in Carlisle at the end of July for 16,000gns. By Elite Forever Brill and out of an Irish dam Roundhill Kmelodie1595, this heifer heads to Dumfries, Scotland to A and A Bunting.

Ampertaine Sherry 22,000gns.JPG

With a small consignment of bulls selected for the sale, Millgate Speedy, home bred by Michael Loughran, Dunamore, Co Tyrone, sold for 11,000gns. Born April 2021 Speedy is sired by Norman Ely, who was purchased by the Millgate herd from the Red Ladies Day sale in December 2010 and is out of the home bred dam Millgate Nifty. He carries both sets of myostatin genes F94L and NT821. Speedy was purchased by fellow breeder James Alexander, Randalstown, Co Antrim.

Ballyrobin Salvatore was the first animal in the sales ring and he kicked things off in style achieving 10,000gns.

Home bred by Joan Gilliland, Antrim, Co Antrim, this January 2021 born bull is by Gunnerfleet Lion and out of the home bred dam Ballyrobin Estee who won second in the category best cow family in the club’s 2021 pedigree herd competition. Gunnerfleet Lion has been used extensively across the Ballyrobin herd and is consistently breeding outstanding stock.

The first Lion son sold, Ballyrobin Redbull to the Droit pedigree herd, was a record price in Dungannon Farmers Mart of 10,600gns in February this year. Salvatore was purchased by John Kingham of Tateetra and Rathmore Farms, Dundalk, Co Louth.

Reserve overall champion Ashmara Sheba 11,000gns

Bernish Sportsman also sold for 10,000gns. Home bred by Kieran McCrory, Sixmilecross, Co Tyrone this April 2021 born bull is the first Foxhillfarm Ourbest son offered for sale in the UK.

Sportsman’s dam Bernish Jodifortune is an Ampertaine Elgin daughter and a full sister to Bernish Memphis who sold in Carlisle in February 2018 for 22,000gns. He now heads to Brynglass Farm in Gwynedd having been purchased by George Evans.

The NI Limousin Cattle Club would like to thank everyone who contributed in any way to make this event a celebration of the breed.

Special thanks to judge Craig Ridley, Auctioneer James Little from H and H, Compere Margaret McQuiston, sponsor Bank of Ireland, the British Limousin Cattle Society and Ballymena Livestock Market.

Ballyrobin Salvatore 10,000gns

Females: 25 forward/19 sold, clearance 76% and average £7563

Bulls: 7 forward/3 sold, clearance 43% and average £10,850

Bernish Sportsman 10,000gns
Bernish Tinajodi 12,000gns
Millgate Speedy 11,000gns
Ronick Sopretty 12,000gns