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NI herd tops Shorthorns at 8500gns

A STEADY trade throughout, without any fliers, set the scene amongst the Beef Shorthorns, where an impressive line-up of bulls sold to a top of 8500gns to average £3978 for 55.

Burnside Elite from W and J McAllister sold for 8500gns
Burnside Elite from W and J McAllister sold for 8500gns

This year's sale leader saw some relatively new genetics hit the headlines, when Burnside Elite, a roan bull from Northern Ireland breeders, William and Jill McAllister, Kells, sold for 8500gns to pedigree breeder, John Thomson, for Thomson, Roddick and Laurie, Newlands, Eaglesfield, Lockerbie. Their entry, a 22-month-old bull, is by the Southern Ireland-bred, Creaga Dice, which bred last year's junior champion that sold for 4800gns for the couple, who run just three Shorthorn cows alongside a much larger 100-strong pedigree and commercial herd and a flock of 300 pedigree and commercial ewes. The dam, Burnside Bluebell, by Glenisla Zinzan is a home-bred show animal – unbeaten as a yearling – and is a daughter of Glenisla Desiree, bought at Perth for 3200gns from Major Gibb.

Bulls from Donald Biggar's Chapelton herd, from Castle Douglas, are usually in the money and this year was no exception, producing the intermediate and overall champion as well as one of two sales at 8000gns. Selling at this mark was Chapelton Exemplar, a full brother to last year's 15,000gns record priced bull, Chapelton Dauphin. A 23-month-old son of the American-bred ET, Chapelton Typhoon, he is out of the Tofts Romany daughter, Chapelton Nettle, and sold to WS Robson and Co, Yatesfield, Otterburn, Newcastle upon Tyne.

James Playfair Hannay's Tofts herd, from Morebattle, Kelso, also came up with the goods with sales at 8000gns and 6500gns. The dearest, Tofts Whisky, a 22-month-old roan bull purchased by pedigree breeder, David Dickie, Knockenjig, Sanquhar. Backed by home-bred genetics on both sides, this second prize winner is by Tofts Jovial, a bull leased to Genus and bred from one of the best cows in the herd being out of the Tofts Shoufler daughter, Tofts Wineberry.

See this week's The Scottish Farmer, out February 9, for a full report on the Shorthorn sale at Stirling, including the prizelist and photos of the sale leaders.

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