Breeders from Northern Ireland were very active and successful at the British Blue Cattle Society annual May sale in Carlisle, writes Rodney Magowan.
Top priced bull Almeley Lighting was Ulster bound when vendor Graham Morgan, Herefordshire accepted a 20,000gns bid from Kevin McGrane, Oak Grange Estate, Derrynoose, Co Armagh.
The top priced British Blue sold by a Northern Ireland breeder was Springhill Mighty Mate from James and Sam Martin, Ballyblack, Newtownards, Co Down. Bought for 12,000gns by Adam and Jess Neachell of the Cromwell Herd based at Walsall in the Black Country this 1st placed junior bull born August 2017 is a son of Ballygrange Dudley out of Springhill Fizz.
Meanwhile J A Woods & Sons, from Shrewsbury in the Welsh Marches bought two bulls, both second prize winners, brought forward by Ulster breeders. Paying 11,000gns for Droit Max ET from Richard J Mowbray, Newtownstewart, Co Tyrone. Max is a Sept 2017 born blue and white bull from the Mountjoy Utopia and Droit Enid ET flush.
Two lots later the Woods family again paid 11,000gns this time for Knockchree Max from SH Gordon of Kilkeel, Co Down, a September 2017 bull by Blackford Big Ben, who is out of the noted Bringlee Sandy.
Other NI British Blue breeders to enjoy success in Carlisle included O & A Maguinness, Greysteel, Co Londonderry and Oliver McCann, Castlewellan, Co Down.
In the female side of the sale prices reached 8,000gns with Brendan O’Hare of Newry paying Kevin Watret, Annan, Scotland 5,000gns for Solway View Moonlight ET.
Commenting Blue Society council member Anne Morrison of Armoy, Co Antrim noted that this small region had again produced livestock selling well in competition with breeders from right across the UK.
“The results from the May sale in Carlisle, coming in the same week as Balmoral Show, again prove that NI breeders can bring out the best of the ultimate beef terminal sire, the British Blue. The breed that adds value to calves from dairy and suckler herds.
“Locally the quality of Blue cattle on display at the RUAS Show was a source of great pride to office holders. Well done to our dedicated members in turning out such a great display of NI Blues in the same week at Balmoral and the Borderway Mart, Carlisle.”
Averages, Borderway Mart
26 Senior Bulls £5682.11
26 Junior Bulls £6195.00
52 Bulls Overall £5938.56
27 served/maiden heifers £2854.44
1 cow with calf at foot £5355.00
3 embryo calves £3080.00