Why are farmers who applied for GLAS being penalised with late basic payments?
The dry and mild weather over the past few weeks has been more than ideal for both ewes and rams. I sold a further remaining 50 mule wether lambs last week - they averaged 19.5kg and graded Rs and Us.
These were finished off grass with no concentrates all year. I was quite happy with the way they thrived over the last month. The tail-ender lambs that are left are still at grass and are being fed a coarse ration twice a day. I hope to have all these gone by mid-November.
The Lanark Blackface rams have recently been let out with some ewes to breed replacements. Some of the best ewes in the flock have been let to the Lanark rams.
This is to ensure that quality replacements are produced from proven ewes that had plenty of milk and reared lambs well over the years.
This year we AI'd some purebred Lanark ewes to some of the most recognised Lanark Blackface rams in the breed including the famous £90,000 (€125,000) Dalchirla, Geordie and £11,000 (€15,200) Midlock.
These were AI'd last week and we are hoping to have some top quality rams and ewes for both sale and retaining from these.
We are always looking to improve our sheep and we had a trip to some of the main Blackface sales in Scotland to learn a bit more and see what the standard was like there. Our first stop was to the Lawrie and Symington livestock mart in Lanark that looked more like a hotel than a livestock mart.
It's a fine building and the organisation and auctioneering at the sale was impressive. The main sale in Lanark had some tremendous sheep that made up to £50,000 (€69,500) but also had some sheep that wouldn't have had me rushing for the chequebook.