A November 2017-born Simmental heifer, due to calve in August, made the top price for in-calf entries at the Irish Simmental Society online commercial heifer sale at Roscommon Mart when she sold for €1,950.
Bred by Martin Doohan, of Lisseycasey, Co Clare, the 97pc Simmental, five star with Replacement Index of €147, was bred by the sire Curraheen Apostle.
There was a 97pc clearance for the entry for the first sale conducted online for the society, to facilitate breeders under the Covid-19 restrictions.
"It worked very successfully online with an excellent clearance," said society secretary Peadar Glennon.
"The most sought-after heifers were 14-16 month-old maiden heifers for putting in calf this year to calve down at 26-28 months."
The top price for these of €1,490 was paid for a 430kg 14-month-old bred by M Lavin of Lacken, Co Cavan from the sire Curaheen Dickens.
The general run of the prices paid for the maiden heifers was €3.30-3.50/kg.
The sale was conducted to the format of the ordinary online commercial sales, with viewing of animals by appointment and all bidding conducted online.
"It was great to be back in business again," said Mr Glennon. "Who knows, maybe later in the year we may have no other choice.
"Definitely some form of online is going to continue."
The next Simmental Society commercial sale is scheduled for Ballymote, Co Sligo in October and the first pedigree sale is planned for the last weekend of that month, with the format to be determined by the restrictions.
So what shape are pedigree livestock sales likely to take in the future?
"There is going to have to be some form of online system - it is not going back to as we were before Covid-19," said Mr Glennon, agreeing that we won't be seeing a packed ringside for some time - if ever.
He says farmers are adapting to the new technology with ease.
"The customers have had no problem getting into the online system," he said.
Not an issue
"They have taken to it very well. In fact most of them seem to like it. So that is not an issue. It is working well.
"For the pedigree sales we are going to have to have some opportunity for the customers to view the animals, similar maybe to what is working at the present time for the commercial sales, with an extended period for viewing of the animals before a sale.
"Purchasers will definitely have to get the opportunity to see the animals before the sale. It will probably mean having the animals assembled at a mart with specified viewing times arranged."