PRICES soared to a top of 2,600gns twice at the January Dungannon Dairy Sale conducted by Taaffe Auctions.
Auctioneer Michael Taaffe confirmed a steady trade with in-milk heifers and cows selling to average 1,740gns per head.
Sharing the day’s joint top price was Carrowcroft Demon Primrose GP84, bred and exhibited by Geoffrey Patton from Carrowdore. This February 2017 heifer was sired by Wintersell Demon ET and is bred from Carrowcroft Dorcy Primrose GP83, who produced 10,081kgs at 3.8% butterfat and 3.34% protein in her second lactation.
This heifer caught the eye of judge Robert Wallace, Templepatrick, to take the supreme championship ribbons sponsored by Bank of Ireland. Calved in mid-December, she is yielding 40 litres per day.
Also commanding a bid of 2,600gns was the December 2017 Glenure Persus Andrea from Cyril Gibson’s herd in Sixmilecross. Sired by Westcoast Perseus, she is bred from the Mr Moviestar Mardi Gras daughter Glenure Gras Andrea GP who averaged 7,647kgs at 3.46% butterfat and 3.08% protein in two lactations.
Geoffrey Patton’s Carrowcroft prefix also produced the day’s reserve champion. Carrowcroft Intruder Mill Ruby was sired by the home-bred Seagull Bay MVP son Carrowcroft Intruder, and is out of Carrowcroft Mill Ruby ET EX91-2E LP50 who averaged 10,721kgs at 3.80% butterfat and 3.15% protein in four 305-day lactations.
Calved in early January, this potential ninth generation VG or EX female is producing 34 litres daily, and came under the hammer at 2,350gns.
Following close behind at 2,330gns was the honourable mention award winner Relough Nadal Rachael VG, a potential seventh generation VG or EX female from the herd of Ronald McLean and Sons, Donaghmore. This second calver was sired by Apina Nadal, and is out of a home-bred dam by Pirolo Goldwyn Wyman. Calved two weeks and producing 46 litres daily, she produced 10,044kgs at 3.64% butterfat and 3.25% protein in her heifer lactation.
Next best at 2,310gns was the August 2017 Drumard Drummer Sophie 2 bred by William Graham, Maguiresbridge. Sired by Wiltor Drummer ET, she was bred from Drumard Cruise Sophie 2 who produced 7,381kgs at 4.29% butterfat and 3.22% protein in her first 305-day lactation.
Geoffrey Patton’s Carrowcroft Intruder Bounty attracted a bid of 2,300gns. This one was sired by the home-bred Carrowcroft Intruder, and is out of the VG87 Carrowcroft Reaper Bounty who gave 8,513kgs at 5.11% butterfat and 3.71% protein in her third lactation.
Cyril Gibson also realised 2,280gns for the Westcoast Perseus daughter Glenure Persus Honey. Her dam Glenure Altabarney Honey GP83 gave 9,745kgs at 4.08% butterfat and 3.17% protein in her second 285-day lactation.
Other leading prices for in-milk heifers include: 2,180gns paid to Geoffrey Patton for Carrowcroft Applejax Ruby 2; 2,100gns paid to Ronald McLean and Sons for Relough Supershot Raven 2; 2,040gns paid to David Dodd, Saintfield for Glenbrae History Limette 2; 2,020gns paid to Philip and Simon Haffey, Portadown, for Glasson Taylor F Ambrosia; and 2,020gns paid to William and James Crawford, Brookeborough, for Ardmore Applicable Freda.
Philip and Simon Haffey realised 2,000gns for Glasson Taylor R Hope. The same price was paid to Geoffrey Patton for Carrowcroft Perseus D Ruby; and to Ronald McLean and Sons for Relough Jedi Blackrose.
A draft entry of females from the Inch Herd of Jim Morrison and James Cleland, Downpatrick, peaked at 2,020gns, realised by the April 2017 heifer Inch Persistent Ivory GP84-2yr. Sired by the home-bred Lakemead Pinnacle son Inch Persistent, her dam was Inch Gerard Ivory EX-2E LP50. Calved in early October she is producing 30kgs at 5.00% butterfat and 3.31% protein.
The Blackisle Benloyal daughter Inch Benloyal Daphne sold for 1,950gns. She calved in early November and is giving 31kgs at 4.70% butterfat and 3.05% protein.
Next best at 1,920gns was the Ayrshire cross Swedish Red heifer Inch Volvo Pansy. Calved in mid-November, she is producing over 35kgs at 4.60% butterfat and 3.18% protein.
An entry of non-pedigree springing British Friesian heifers consigned by Richard Beattie, Omagh, sold to a top of 1,380gns. This one is due in mid-February to an Aberdeen Angus bull.