Top prices for NI Limousin bulls

Lenagh Mortheus - 28,000gns
Lenagh Mortheus - 28,000gns

Northern Ireland breeders achieved some of the top prices at the British Limousin Cattle Society’s early spring sale held at Borderway Mart on Saturday, 17th February.

Commercial producers were out in force, clearly in the market to buy the bulls of their choice, and the trade was bolstered by a super selection of breeder’s bulls. The sale again saw buyers looking for strong calving ease and all-round performance figures.

On a day where a remarkable 20 bulls made five figure prices and above, and 59 in all sold for 5000gns and over, the overall average was a mighty £7540 for the 104 bulls sold, up £871 on the year. Showcasing just how firm the demand was the sale delivered a clearance rate of 87%. In the particularly strong junior section, which included the pre-sale show Champion and Reserve, the average for the 28 bulls was an outstanding £10,834, a record section average for the Limousin breed at Carlisle.

Amongst the top prices was 28,000gns for another junior class winner Lenagh Morpheus from Mark Stewart, Randalstown, Co Antrim. The September 2016 born embryo calf is bred from the Broadmeadows Cannon sired Lenagh Chanel and by the AI sire Plumtree Fantastic, a bull that has bred numerous five-figure sales for his owner Ian Handley. Morpheus is just as well-bred on his dam side; Chanel is daughter of Kype Ulay, who Mark purchased privately as a maiden heifer from the Kype Herd of Rona and Aileen Cruickshank. Lenagh Morpheus was purchased by the noted Wilodge Herd, Shifnal, Shropshire.

In another good day for Northern Irish breeders Co-Tyrone based Kieran McCroy received 22,000gns for his September 2016 born embryo calf Bernish Memphis who stood second to Lenagh Morpheus in class fourteen. Memphis is bred from the show heifer Bernish Julifortune, an Ampertain Elgin daughter who was the Female Champion at the NI calf show in 2015 and a winner at Balmoral Show in the same year. He is by the 23,000gns Fairywater Haig and also sold in a two-way split, this time to A H and K J Booth, Hardwick Hall Farm, Sheffield for their Sevengun Herd and along with G J Lee & C M Lloyd, Calogale Beef Semen Sales, Kidwelly, Carmarthenshire.

Meanwhile, Carnew Millreef came in at 14,500gns when selling to Aileen Ritchie, Burnside, Aberdeenshire. Consigned by J & J Aiken, Dromore, Co Down, this calf which stood second in class ten, is by Lyndberg Hero whose progeny includes the 20,000gns Lyndberg James, and is out of the Wilodge Vantastic daughter Carnew Erica.

At 12,000gns was Eniver Maybe from Michael McKeefry, Garvagh, Coleraine, Co Londonderry. By the prolific AI sire Ampertaine Foreman, and out of the Ronick Hawk daughter Eniver Alice, this was another bull with good calving figures and a Beef Value of LM+48. Buying this July 2016 born bull was Andrew Clark and family for their Mayfields pedigree herd at Hangram Lane Farm, Ringinglow, Sheffield. Three lots earlier the Eniver herd sold its other entry, Eniver Monk, for 9000gns to the Garmon herd of Mrs S. Lloyd Jones, Pant-Y-Coed, Chwilog, Pwllheli.

At the close of the sale the British Limousin Cattle Society’s Chief Executive Iain Kerr said: “It’s been a fantastic sale and there’s such a strong demand from the commercial sector with buyers readily competing with pedigree breeders for the bulls of their choice. Buyers are looking for bulls with the carcase traits that the breed is renowned for and coupled with good calving ease and all-round performance figures. Today we’ve seen fifteen new commercial buyers purchase along with pedigree breeders and repeat commercial buyers. The combination of age to slaughter, meeting target weights and grades, and high killing out and beef yield, the breed is meeting market requirements and driving a profit for producers and right through the supply chain.”

AVERAGES:

36 Senior Bulls £5670.00, 40 Intermediate Bulls £6916.88, 28 Junior Bulls £10833.75, 104 Bull Overall £7539.81 (+£871.39)