Dungannon venue for Ile de France sale

Left to right: Georgina Mulligan with her Ile de France Breed Champion, judge Monsieur Jacques Josselin, France and Reserve Champion with David Dalzell
Left to right: Georgina Mulligan with her Ile de France Breed Champion, judge Monsieur Jacques Josselin, France and Reserve Champion with David Dalzell

Dungannon Farmers Mart welcomes the Northern Ireland’s Ile De France Sheep Breeders Club for their 42nd Annual Show & Sale on Thursday, 2nd August.

Judge will be past Chairman Michael McConville who will have the difficult task as he places stock from the leading show teams of 2018.

Mull competing in the Continental Final at Clogher Show

Mull competing in the Continental Final at Clogher Show

Following on from a very competitive show season which began with the Tullyheran Flock of Rodger Milligan taking Champion and Reserve Champion honours at the RUAS Balmoral, 2018 has been one of the most competitive in recent years with all flocks lifting red ribbons across the following shows, Ballymoney, Lurgan, Armagh, Ballymena, Omagh, Saintfield, Clogher Valley. In fact Champion and Reserve Champion awards have been also won by the following flocks, Carrick Flock: Edward Adamson, Garveway Flock, Rebecca & Georgina Mulligan Mountnabview Flock, David Dalzell, Bencrum Flock, Melvyn Annett and the Glenhoy flock of David Mulligan. In addition to these flocks stock will also be exhibited by Wesley Cousins from his Benview Flock, and the family representatives for the late Jim Donaldson (Loughorne Flock) have entered a nucleus of breeding ewes as well as the 2017 batch of ewe lambs that had been retained for breeding for the sale.

Ile De France Show Awards 2018

Breeders Cup: Champion Flock: Garveway, Rebecca & Georgina Mulligan, Reserve Champion Flock: Tullyheran, Rodger Milligan

Closamectin Show Team of the year: Garveway, Runners Up Glenhoy: David Mulligan.

Rodger & Henry Milligan with their Balmoral Champion 2018

Rodger & Henry Milligan with their Balmoral Champion 2018

Male of the Year: Garveway Zach (a Shearling ram) exhibited by Rebecca & Georgina Mulligan followed up his success at Balmoral to hold off the challenge from Carrick Jack, a senior stock ram exhibited by Rodger Milligan, Mountnabview Winston exhibited by Edward Adamson as well as the girl’s own Senior ram Garveway Senator.

Female of the Year: Garveway MG222-W0479 a three year old home bred ewe picked up 1sts at Ballymoney, Armagh, Omagh and Saintfield to secure this award.

Sire of the year: Carrick Jack. The senior stock ram of the Tullyheran flock not only was a winner himself but stamped his mark with a tremendous crop of male and female lambs which picked up red and blue prizes themselves.

Genetic Improvements

Performance recording has been key to the popularity of the Ile De France breed in France with one of the most comprehensive recording systems in use, combining individual ram testing followed up by progeny test with breeders committing 30% of the flock to AI using the top genetics within the breed. Likewise Genetic trends available through Signet going back to 2000 show significant improvements across all leading traits. Currently three flocks record Carrick, Garveway and Glenhoy. 2018 has seen the highest indexed lamb in the society at 366 from the Glenhoy flock, but also it is worth noting that new genetics from Sires Phillippe 50334 (imported from France) and Mountnabview Winston have bred lambs in the top 10% of the breed.

Significant gains have been made in areas of eight week weights, mature size, maternal ability and muscle depth combining to give approximately a 60% increase in overall Terminal Index.

Special Reduction Sale

The executors of Jim Donaldson are sending a consignment of stock from his famous Loughorne Flock. The Loughorne flock is the current holder of The N.I. Ile de France Club Champion Flock having won it last October before his sudden passing. In the mid 1970’s Jim was one of the original founder members of the N.I. Ile de France Club starting with the purchase of three females and two males. Since that time Jim’s Loughorne Flock has held the Champion Flock title more times than any other flock. He was ‘over the moon’ when a shearling ram he had bred ‘Loughorne Le Gentil Homme’ was the first Ile de France to make 1000 guineas at a Society Sale in Carlisle.

One of his proudest moments was being asked to judge at The National French Show in 2004 being held that year at Rennes in north west of France, a recognition of his ability and expertise within the breed.

Over the years the Loughorne Flock has been consistently breeding stock of excellent quality and confirmation with the trademark of tight skins. The family have kept a small number of females but this sale gives breeders, old and new the opportunity to purchase stock with a lifetime of breeding behind them.