Trade for Herefords continues to push out the boundaries with a top price of €4,600 and an overall average of €3,277 for Herefords at the annual April bull sale at Kilkenny this week.
Champion Balleen Budget owned by Tom Brennan (in background) & shown by Owen Sheehy sold at the top price of €4,600
Regular exhibitor and Championship winner Tom Brennan, Freshford was in the winner’s enclosure once again this time with Balleen Budget a Gageboro Eugenic son out of Balleen Miss Perfect 5th. A long bull with plenty of growth he sold to Pat Fogarty, Rathcormack, Waterford for a top bid of €4,600.
This result immediately followed by a final bid of €4,000 for Reserve Champion Coolnacritta Conor set the pace for the remainder of the sale. This very useful bull was shown by a local breeder Sean Shiel, Coolnacritta, Rathdowney and was sired by his herd sire Glaslough King a Rathregan Napoleon son out of a Breaney Sam daughter Coolnacritta Rose. The purchaser was Dick Lonergan, Ahenny, Carrick on Suir.
€3,500 was the final bid by Michael Kelly, Gowran, Co Kilkenny to secure Balleen Doc a Lisnaean Donal 1st son out of Balleen Vallrey which was the second of two bulls exhibited by Tom Brennan giving him an average of over €4,000 for the two of his four entries forward. He had two absentees which he had already sold direct from his yard in the days leading up to the sale at similar prices.
Another local breeder who had a very good result at this venue just a month ago is Rathdowney breeder Francis Scott. His offering on this occasion included four bulls Knockfin Noble, Dunmore, Unite and Lewis all by his herd sire Rathregan Upgrader. These sold for an average of €3,000 netting him a neat €12,000 for the days endeavour.
Co Offaly breeder Michael Molloy exhibited Moyclare Lusty a son of Moyclare Rose 17th by Kilronan Hosea and was pleased with his price of €3,000
The overall average of €3,277 was generally agreed as a very satisfactory outcome for the range of bulls on offer. The supply of Hereford bulls on offer is tightening early in the season with many bulls already purchased. Hereford cross calves are currently selling at premium prices while stores and finishing cattle are also in very keen demand. Strong competition between meat plants is driving prices for quality assured stock as they strive to grow supply to meet the expanding demand for Hereford quality beef at retail outlets at home and in export markets.
This upcoming sale provides an major opportunity for existing and new entrants to the breed to add or establish new breeding lines to their herds. This is the largest group of Hereford females to come on the market in recent years. The herd has been painstakingly put together with much care over many years. Animals featured, their bloodlines or progeny will feature in the sale. Catalogue available shortly.
The Hereford show and sale of bulls at Bandon this week had one of the largest crowds ever in attendance. This is a strong indication of the interest in Herefords in the region which was reinforced by the clearance of bulls later with just three bulls failing to reach their reserve.
The Champion was exhibited by Ted O’Sullivan the well-known Hereford breeder from Bartlemy, Fermoy. This is the third year in succession that Ted has taken the Championship at the venue. Furaleigh Prince 907 a son of long time Bandon AI sire Carhuefree Prince with an estimated calving difficulty figure of 3.6% was the selection of the judge and youngest ever Hereford Society President Ivor Deverell of Ballyaville Herefords. The dam is Furaleigh Lass 716 by Furaleigh Generator. He sold at €3,300 to Oliver O’Brien, Crough, Fermoy.
The Reserve Champion Fortregal Ezra exhibited by another local Hereford breeder and regular in the winner’s enclosure at Bandon Gerard Lucey, Forrest, Coachford is sired by a Scottish bull Ervie Classic S30 a very consistent sire. He was purchased at €3,050 by Fachtna O’Driscoll, Ardgehane, Skibbereen.
The sale topper at €3,400 Arlinstown Star 4th, is a son of Australian sire Yarram Star General W251 a sire with a five star rating for both terminal and maternal traits whose semen is regrettably no longer available. Out of a home bred dam Arlinstown Helen 5th this useful bull was exhibited by Declan Murphy, Arlinstown, Ballinhassig. The herd was founded and managed very successfully for many years by Declan’s uncle the late Gerry Murphy. This long very useful bull was purchased by extensive dairy farmer John Dunne, Ladysbridge who brings all progeny to slaughter for the Hereford branded beef schemes.
Other principal prices included Droumdaniel Johnny the youngest bull in the sale at sixteen months he is sired by Allowdale Excellent a Mawarra Sentimental son and was shown by Gene Lynch, Droumdaniel, Bantry. He sold at €2,850. John Cronin, Mourneabbey, Mallow received €2,800 for his Clyde Knight a Bowmont Storm A584 son out of Allowdale Laura by Border General V25. Kieran Noonan, Tullylease, Charleville exhibited Double Tree Ivan an Ardlahan Ginger son out of Clondrina 646th which sold at €2,700.
Overall this is a very welcome result for Herefords at Bandon with such an effective clearance, an increase of€460 on the average price there last spring. Hereford cross calves at the venue are enjoying excellent demand with a top price of €525 for a five week old bull calf on the Monday prior to the bull sale.
Herefords sold to a top price of €6,100 and an average of €3,600 at the Society’s Premier spring Show & Sale at Tullamore well surpassing the average at the recent sale at Kilkenny where demand outstripped supply.
Increased demand for Hereford bulls is clearly indicated by reports from breeders across the country that they are selling bulls earlier than in previous years and that many Hereford bulls have already been purchased on farm. This was apparent in Tullamore where ten of the twelve absentees were already sold in advance of the sale. Breeders are therefore understandably upping their expectations achieving their targets and in many instances surpassing them.
This was the situation at Tullamore where average prices increased by €500 on the same event in 2014. There is no doubt a number of buyers from Northern Ireland attending the sale influenced the overall outcome. The day’s top price of €6,100 was however paid by well-known Cavan Hereford breeder Sean McKiernan of Corlismore who has already sold sixteen Hereford bulls on farm this spring. His selection was the Reserve Champion Moyclare Mariner a November born son of Brocca Saviour from the herd of Michael Molloy Belmont, Co Offaly who also exhibited the Reserve Champion at last year’s event which sold to Dovea AI. This is a classic combination of some very successful Australian bloodlines imported through the Society’s Breed Improvement scheme in recent years. The sire Brocca Saviour is currently the number one bull for terminal traits on the ICBF evaluations; he is a son of the very successful Bowmont Storm A584. The dam of Mariner is Moyclare Dora a daughter of Yarram Pompeii V055.
Moyclare Lunar a first prize-winner and half-brother from the same stable out of Moyclare Pansy3rd by Skehanore Henry sold at €4,700 to Mervyn Hamilton, Castlederg, Co Tyrone. Mr Molloy was well pleased with the outcome heading home with a sale average of €5,400.
The Champion Knockmountagh Master a Grianan Firecracker son was exhibited by Eamon & John McKiernan, Monasterboice, Co Louth. The father and son partnership are no strangers to the top honours having scooped the Championship at the National Calf show in November last with this young bull. Northern Ireland Hereford breeder David Wilson of Maheraveley, Co Fermanagh was quickly off the mark as soon as this Knockmountagh Carmel son entered the ring finally securing him with a bid of €4,900.
Knockmountagh Bruno a first prize-winner also exhibited by Eamon & John McKiernan this time sired by Bowmont Vancouver another sire whose semen has been imported by the Society sold at €4,000 to William, Fleury, Killyon, Birr. This young bull’s dam Knockmountagh Aoife is a very good breeding cow sired by the very successful Churchill Storm V583. Vancouver progeny have been coming to prominence of late since semen of Bowmont Storm has become unavailable.
Willie Kennedy, Ballyforan, Co Roscommon on his first day out at Tullamore was extremely happy to part with his eighteen month old Feevaghmorepoll 1 Governor a Gouldingpoll 1 Superduty son at €4,650. He sold to Mervyn Hamilton of Castlederg who had already purchased Moyclare Lunar at €4,700. This bull is out of a cow Aliehs Annette purchased by Mr Kennedy from Timmy & Sheila O’Sullivan, Brosna, Tralee, Co Kerry.
Kye Hector 645 exhibited by Padraig McGrath, Kye, Elphin is by Free Town Hotspur and out of Kye Sheila 564 a Bowmont Storm A584 daughter. He was purchased by Damien Mulleady, Taughmaconnell, Ballinasloe, at €4,500. The sire Free Town Hotspur is a UK imported stockbull jointly owned by Padraig McGrath and JJ Farrell, Trillick, Co Longford.
Co Monaghan breeder Cathal Flynn, Tullyard, Monaghan accepted a final bid of €3,750 from Brian Stanley, Erill, Portlaois for his yearling bull Rossmore Kestrel. A Grianan King Kong son he is out of Rossmore Blossom by Ballyaville Nelson.
Grianan Neon from Tom & Anselm Fitzgerald a five star bull by Grianan Highflyer ET was purchased by Marcus Neylon, Darragh, Ennis, Co Clare at €3,700. Its dam Grianan Orange K581 is out of his award winning dam Grianan Dominique and is a Bowmont Storm A584 daughter.
It is perhaps worth noting that just three bulls went to pedigree breeders with the balance purchased by dairy and suckler producers. Hereford cross calf and store cattle prices are buoyant currently while demand for quality assured stock fitting the requirements of processors and retailers for the Hereford branded beef outlets continues to grow week on week. These appear to be the main drivers of demand while some marts suggest many store heifers and heifer calves are destined for the suckler beef herd as replacements in recognition of the dependability of the Hereford cross cow in terms of fertility, docility, milk and fertility.
Overall the average at €3,600 was very satisfactory with a range from €2,000 to €6,100 and a clearance of 66%. The Society’s next sale is at Nenagh on Saturday April18th with one the following week at Kilmallock on Friday April 24th.