THE annual January Gems Texel Female Sale returned to Ballymena Mart on the first Saturday of the New Year, when average prices for gimmers exceeded the 2018 sale, settling at over £885. This equalled the previous year’s average for all lots catalogued at over £800, with over 85 per cent clearance the market was hot for quality females.
The sale took off with a flying start when the first lot from the Glenross flock was knocked down to Messrs Perry, Kilkeel, for £1,155. This was the first of 15 lots to hit the £1,000+ mark.
Topping the sale was a super gimmer from the Corbo & Farmhill flocks purchased by G Beacom, Fivemiletown, she changed hands for £3,780. A Farmhill Whizzkid daughter out of a Glenside Topgun Dam, she sold in-lamb to Strathbogie Best Bet.
Also from the Corbo & Farmhill pen, selling to £1,365, although she was just third into the ring, was a Tullagh Yogi daughter. Again in-lamb to Strathbogie Best Bet she travels South to County Wexford having sold to J Kidd, Bunclody, while her pen mate, bred from the same sire and in-lamb to Best Bet, headed west to County Donegal having changed hands for £1,050.
The Straidarran flock bred by Stanley and Martin Warnock had a great day’s trading, selling a trio of ladies over the £2,000 mark. They presented a Foyle View Wally daughter who topped the pen selling to £2,730; she joins the Paramor flock in Plumbridge.
Following closely behind her from the Straidarran pen, with very similar breeding and also in lamb to Tamnamoney Bonkers, was a strong Knock Travis granddaughter which sold to £2,625. She travels to Ballymoney to the Kilmoyle flock of A Christie, while the final gimmer in this elite trio sold to RJ Watters, County Tyrone, for £2,415.
Travelling from County Down, John Trimble’s Curley flock peaked at £1890 for a Millar’s Yankee daughter out of a Strathbogie Smokey Blue dam and in-lamb to Strathbogie Yes Sir. She was also snapped up by the Paramor flock while the next two lots into the ring from the Curley flock made £1,050 and £1,260, both in lamb to Strathbogie Yes Sir. They were purchased by S Loughran and O Donohoe respectively.
Limavady brothers Chris and Martin Mullan were delighted with their sales also, hitting a top price of £1575 for a Tullylagan Yukon Gold bred gimmer out of an Etterick My Jinks ewe, and she travels to Ballycastle having been purchased by J McGill, in-lamb to Drumgooland Aga Khan.
Also clearing the £1,050 mark for the Mullan brothers were a pair of gimmers bred from Sandelford Wolverine and Millcomb Vindicator, they sold to J Parke, Raphoe, and S McNeilly, Ballyclare, and come in-lamb to Aga Khan and Donnelly Atom.
Empty ewe lambs also experienced strong trading with the last two lots into the ring selling to £682.50 and £651 for the Farmhill and Corbo flocks and a Tullyard Achilles daughter from the same team realising £525.
Castlederg couple John and Leona Young saw a Blackstown Wayne lamb from the Kilrail House flock, changing hands for the same money, while a Redford Young Gun daughter sold through the ring for £315.
Embryo Transplants proved popular with the buyers as the Farmhill/Corbo team saw S Scullion, County Tyrone, purchase both their ET lots; embryos from Clinterty Yuga Khan and Springwell Viera dams served to Strathbogie Best Bet, for £577.50 and £735 respectively.
Overall this was an excellent day’s trading for all the consignors.