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Thursday 24 May 2018

Strong demand for heifers but customers scarce for bulls at Salers Pedigree Show and Sale

 

Double success for Macroom, Co Cork herd with Nial O'Connell from Toames East, Macroom showing Female Champion of Show, Highfield Sultana, while Noel McSweeney is holding Highfield Shirley, the second prizewinner in the same show class
Double success for Macroom, Co Cork herd with Nial O'Connell from Toames East, Macroom showing Female Champion of Show, Highfield Sultana, while Noel McSweeney is holding Highfield Shirley, the second prizewinner in the same show class
Reserve Champion of Show Heifer, Sligo Pepita, with Niall Hunt from Lisbaleely, Gurteen, Co Sligo and Michael Fox, judge
Niall Hunt from Lisbaleely, Gurteen, Co Sligo with Champion Bull of Show Sligo Rudde and Michael Fox, judge.

Martin Ryan

The French imports upon which the 'Sligo' pedigree Salers herd was established almost a quarter of a century ago continues to be a cornerstone for the success of the Gurteen herd.

When Bernard Hunt collected another top double success for his Salers herd on Saturday, it was further vindication of the quality within the breed of the bloodlines for the origin of the herd in the mid 1990s.

The 'Sligo' herd showed the Overall Champion of the Show Bull and Reserve Champion of the Show Heifer at the Salers Spring Pedigree Show and Sale at Mountrath Mart on Saturday for the winners of their respective classes, with two of three entries from the herd at the show and sale receiving rosettes.

Show judge Michael Fox from Tullamore tapped forward Sligo Rudde for Champion Bull of the show. The September 2016-born was by the sire Halley and out of the herd dam Sligo Heiti of Voltaire and Volga bloodlines.

Reserve Champion of Show Heifer, Sligo Pepita, with Niall Hunt from Lisbaleely, Gurteen, Co Sligo and Michael Fox, judge
Reserve Champion of Show Heifer, Sligo Pepita, with Niall Hunt from Lisbaleely, Gurteen, Co Sligo and Michael Fox, judge

The five-star terminal and three-star replacement bull, with five-star indices for carcass weight and docility plus four star for carcass conformation within the breed, has a five-star replacement index within all beef breeds.

He sold for €2,500 under the hammer of auctioneer Michael Farrelly, Delvin, the joint highest price for bulls sold from a small entry for the sale. The ­Reserve Champion Heifer was December 2015-born, Sligo ­Pepita, the breeding combination of Garou (s) and Sligo Hearty (d) with a four-star breed index for replacement and five star across all breeds at 43pc reliability, which sold for €2,500, the second highest heifer price.

Ryan Griffith from Carricknahorna, Ballyshannon, Co Donegal, with first prizwinning bull, Cashelard Ryan.
Ryan Griffith from Carricknahorna, Ballyshannon, Co Donegal, with first prizwinning bull, Cashelard Ryan.

The breeding lines of both winners go back to the foundation stock of a bull and two heifers imported from France in 1995.

The 70-cow suckler herd on the farm at Gurteen, Co Sligo are all pedigree Salers on which crossing with Charolais is widely used with no calving difficulties, a benefit of the uniqueness of the Salers which are accredited with the largest pelvis of any suckler breed.

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"The crossing is producing golden-coloured progeny that make great quality weanlings with plenty of hair," said Bernard of the herd which has had many show and sale successes over the years.

Reserve Champion of Show bull was Woodview Sandy, a February 2017-born bull, bred and exhibited by chairman of the society Eddie Brennan from Coon East, Coon, Co Kilkenny which fell short of his reserve in the salesring.

Eddie Brennan from Coon East, Coon, Co Kilkenny, with Reserve Champion of Show bull, Woodview Sandy.
Eddie Brennan from Coon East, Coon, Co Kilkenny, with Reserve Champion of Show bull, Woodview Sandy.

Champion Heifer was Highfield Sultana, a January 2017-born, Lcare (s) and Highfield Ophelia (d) breeding combination from the herd of Nial O'Connell from Toames East, Macroom, Co Cork, which sold for €2,000.

Highest price of the day was €2,700 which Tom McGreal from Prospect, Westport, Co Mayo received for 14-month-old first prize winner, Clew Bay Sheila.

There was strong demand for heifers, reflected in a clearance of 82pc at an average of €1,859, which included two May 2017 and July 2017-born heifers from the herd of Kathleen Ward, Ballinasloe each selling for €1,500.

Bulls averaged €2,400 for a clearance of 27pc in a weak trade with customers scarce.

Eddie Ward leading Brownhall Sarah, a first prizewinner exhibited by Jimmy McGroarty from Lisminton, Ballintra, Co Donegal
Eddie Ward leading Brownhall Sarah, a first prizewinner exhibited by Jimmy McGroarty from Lisminton, Ballintra, Co Donegal

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