Pedigree bulls reached a ceiling of 3,900gns at the Northern Ireland Simmental Cattle Breeders’ Club’s evening show and sale, held at Ballymena Livestock Mart.
Hitting the headlines in both the show and sale rings was Lisglass Domino TSI+60 SRI+59, an eighteen-month-old entry consigned by Leslie Weatherup, and son Christopher, from Ballyclare, County Antrim.
Sired by the 13,000gns Woodhall Premier – reserve junior champion at Perth in October 2004; he is bred from the Omorga Prince daughter Lisglass Treasure – one of 35-cows in the herd.
Club chairman and pre-sale judge Richard Rodgers from the 25-cow Hiltonstown herd based at Portglenone, County Antrim, described Domino as an easy champion. "This bull really stood out the minute he entered the showring. He is very correct and full of breed character."
Bidding was brisk for the male and supreme overall champion, with auctioneer Graham Loughrey taking the securing bid from pedigree breeders Nick and Nadia Gwynne, who travelled from Whithorn in Scotland to secure a new stock bull for their Chestermann herd.
Next best at 2,800gns was the reserve male champion Coolcrannel Echo bred by Willie Phair, Lisbellaw, County Fermanagh. Almost fourteen-months-old, he was sired by the 10,000gns junior and supreme October 2010 Perth champion Drumlone Anchor. His dam is a home-bred Kilbride Farm Newry daughter – one of 6-cows in the herd which dates back to the mid 1970’s. Buyer was J McCloskey from Claudy, County Londonderry.
Following close behind at 2,700gns was the third prize winning Corrick Dominator TSI+85 SRI+90, a November 2012 born entry from Cecil McIlwaine, and sons Scott and Neil, Newtownstewart, County Tyrone. Sired by stock bull Omorga Tarbuck, he is out of a home-bred Corrick Nebraska daughter. Highest bidder was Andrew McBride from Ligoniel, Belfast.
The first prize winning Ranfurly Esquire TSI+66 SRI+67 came under the hammer at 2,500gns for David Hazelton, Dungannon, County Tyrone. This fourteen-month-old bull was sired by Whitemire King Kong, and is bred from the Raceview King daughter Raceview Melisa Stella. He was snapped up by George Barr who runs 350 suckler cows at farms in Larne and Drumfries.
Also selling at 2,500gns was Rehall Edward TSI+68 SRI+70, a third prize winner brought out by Willie Stubbs, and son Keith, from Irvinestown, County Fermanagh. Born in April 2013, he is by Drumlone Anchor, and out of a home-bred Hillcrest King daughter. He sold to Rainey Bros, Larne, County Antrim.
The collective entry of Simmental females peaked at 2,500gns, paid to Keith and Andrea Nelson, Rosslea, County Fermanagh, for their female and reserve supreme champion Scribby Farms Dora.
Born in November 2012, she is a daughter of the herd’s jointly owned stock bull Drumlone Anchor, and is out of Drumacritten Wendy – one of 12 cows in the herd which is run alongside a 60-cow dairy enterprise. Buyer was Norman Farquhar from Ballymena, County Antrim.
Andrew Clarke from Tynan, County Armagh, realised 2,300gns for the reserve female champion Breaghey Elberta. Born in April 2013, she is by Drispey Super King, and is out of the 3,100gns Corrick Vida – female champion at the club’s spring show and sale at Dungannon in 2009. This one joins Wesley Abraham’s Magheracrigan herd at Irvinestown, County Fermanagh.
Ballymena Mart also played host to the dispersal of the Inishrush herd for brothers William and Philip Whyte, Portglenone.
Trade peaked at 5,000gns, realised by the September 2008 born Inishrush Sheila 1st. Sired by Stirling Nelson, she is bred from a Milnafua Graduate daughter, and was accompanied by her six-month-old Omorga Cameron heifer calf. Scanned in-calf to Kilbride Farm Delboy, this one joins Leslie and Christopher Weatherup’s Lisglass Herd.
Next best at 3,500gns was Inishrush Prudence, an August 2009 born Camus Brandy daughter bred from Hazelden Prudence 5th. Included in the price was her five-week-old Omorga Cameron heifer calf. This outfit was snapped up by pedigree breeder Owen McElroy for his Mullanroe herd at Augher, County Tyrone.
The October 2011 born Dovefields Gallant daughter Inishrush Rachel sold to Mr R Gilmore, Dromore, County Tyrone, for 3,100gns. She is scanned in-calf to Omorga Cameron.
A small entry of commercial Simmental females saw prices top at £1,380, paid to Jonathan Fowler, Dungannon, for an in-calf heifer; while Robin Boyd, Portglenone, realised £1,350 for an in-calf heifer. Maiden heifers topped at £1,020 and £960 paid to RJ and SR Mawhinney, Draperstown.
Averages: 11 bulls (73%) £2,548; 6 heifers (60%) £1,951; 13 commercial heifers £975; Inishrush dispersal: 16 lots £1,973.
Auctioneers: JA McClelland and Sons Ltd