I'm very pleased at how the breeding sales went for me
It has been a busy few weeks with breeding sales and with the AI of the pedigree Bluefaced Leicesters and the shearing of ewe lambs.
The breeding sales are finished for the year. They concluded with the sale of Bluefaced Leicester rams and the Mayo Blackface sale.
All in all I am very pleased on how the breeding sales went for me this year. My mule ewe lambs were up €4/hd on last year. I sold 50 draft Mayo Mountain ewes that have been on the farm for years.
These ewes were not required for this breeding season as I had a surplus of replacements in the flock. I had the champion and reserve champion Bluefaced Leicester Rams at the premier sale in Ballinrobe.
My last outing for 2012 will be to go over to Bluefaced Leicester sale in Carlisle. I have never been in Britain for a ram sale and I hope it will be an event from which I can learn and improve my own stock.
The work is set to continue into the coming month as I must be alert and vigilant as my rams are being let run with the ewes. The Beltex ram has been running with the mule ewes for the past three weeks and at present 48pc of these ewes have been covered.
I used a yellow raddle on the ram at the beginning and this was changed to green two weeks after the ram was let out and will be changed again in another two weeks. It is a critical time of the year for any sheep farmer. The aim this time of year is get all of the flock's ewes in lamb and with a short lambing period and a high litter size. This year I decided to fertility test all my rams, including all the shearling rams I sold. This is important for all farmers because an infertile ram can be very damaging to the flock.
I wanted to fertility test the rams I had for sale as it gave the purchaser peace of mind that the ram was fit to do his job.