Averages were up across the board at this year’s autumn sale of Highland cattle, in Oban, with a lead price of 4000gns at the top of the roup roll – and a heifer calf sold for a record 3200gns.
With United Auctions now in charge of the mart, it was ‘new boy’ Raymond Kennedy who was in the box where he faced the perennial problem of having a large audience, who were slow to bid.
But he worked away and coached the sale through a shaky start to achieve a 75% clearance rate. There was also export interest from Germany, Belgium and Canada to keep things moving along.
The top price was for the show’s reserve champion, the two-year-old heifer Sguillin 4 of Mottistone, from Michael Poland and brought out by Willie McLean, who looks after the Scottish end of the fold at West Ferlochan, Benderloch.
Fifth at the National show, in Perth, this heifer is by a bull which has already bred many champions for the fold, Eoin Mhor 8 of Mottistone. That sire is a champion himself, most notably at the Glasgow International and Great Yorkshire shows in 2012.
Taking her for the top bid was Veda Dewar and Kenneth Wood, buying for their new Witches Craig fold they are building up near Stirling.
Also heading home with them was a couple of heifers at 2000gns apiece. That included a first-prize three-year-old from Mrs Heather Corrigall, Culnaha, Nigg, near Tain. Erin Ruadh of Earn is by Josh of Earn and sold in calf to Angus Ruadh of Wester Croachy.
The other going to Witches Craig at that price was Capleadh Glaschu 5 of Craigowmill, a three-year-old daughter of Fear Siridh of Balmoral from Ken and Eva Brown, Ledlanet, Kinross. The Royal connection continued with the service sire, Ruaridh 1 of Ubhaidh, the Balmoral stock bull which was overall champion at the 2014 Royal Highland Show for HM The Queen.
That same fold also had the second top in the price ratings, at 3600gns. This was the show’s champion, Kirsty 11 of Craigowmill, another three-year-old packed with the same bloodlines.

The Scottish Farmer:

She was knocked down to Lady Sally and Sir Michael Nairn for their Balnabroich fold, in Strathardle.
Striking white calves have a big following at Oban and this year it was one from Dexter Logan, of Blairlogan Highlanders, Alva, which proved a big attraction selling for a new calf price record of 3200gns to Ron Riley, of Chelmsford, Essex, for his Bluehouse fold.

The Scottish Farmer:
Katie Morag 13 of Blairlogan is by Logan of Muingairigh, was second at the recent West Club show and is a full sister to the calf champion at the 2013 sale.
Another from the same home, Lan Larla 6 of Blairlogan was taken to 2400gns by Roy Tylden Wright, for his Ubhaidh fold at Lagganbridge. By Bono Buidhe of Ceannacroic, this three-year-old is out of the Great Yorkshire champion, Ban Larla 4 of Blairlogan and in calf to Tomintoul of Glamis.
A red heifer calf almost got to the record price too when it made 3000gns. This was Lady Jane Campbell 2 of Cladich from Jon and Queenie Strickland, Cladich, Dalmally. 
She’s by the 9500gns stock bull, Campbell of Tilbouries, which was reserve champion at Oban in February, 2016, and goes back to a Harvieston cow on the dam side. She heads to Germany after being bought by Willi Bange and Sons, for their Vom Sunderberg fold.
The reserve three-year-old was bid to 2800gns. This was Gordon McConachie’s Nessia 4 of Culfoich, from Culfoichmore, Advie, Grantown-on-Spey, which was bought by Paul Harris for his Harris fold, in Bedfordshire.

The Scottish Farmer:
The money gets him a daughter of Eoin Mhor 3 of Mottistone, which was Oban champion in February 2011 and bought for 6000gns, and in calf to Jacob 2 of Benmore, which had sired the Stirling sale champion this past spring.

The champion young handler was Logan Ross (12), who was helping out with Blairlogan Highlanders. He won the junior section before beating the top senior young handler, Asha Nelson (16), from Glengorm, Mull, for the overall.

The Scottish Farmer:
Also announced at the show were the winners of the society’s show folds of the year.
The large fold winner was the Seam fold owned by Emma and Simon Haley, from Co Durham, while the small fold title went to Robert Wain’s Rose fold, from Derbyshire.
Top young handler throughout the year was Jayden McLaughlan, from the Isle of Bute.
The prettiest calf photo winner was Jenne Singer, Kintore House, Auchenblae, and the journal front cover picture was taken from Lesley and Kenny Matheson, of the Brue fold, on Lewis.


10 three-year-old heifers, £2110.50 (+£179.50); 10 two-year-old heifers, £1738 (+£380); 14 yearling heifers, £828.75 (+£37.75); 20 calves, £941.32 (+£166.32); three cows, £1050 (nc).

Charity heifer hits 2000gns

THE POIGNANT moment of the sale came when Una Bhuidhe 10 of Miungairigh was sold for 2000gns to Graeme Keep, of the Chedley fold, in Suffolk.
This was bred by the late Angus MacColl, who tragically passed away recently, with the proceeds of the sale going to the Beatson Cancer Centre.
An in-calf heifer by Tomintoul of Glamis Castle and out of Una Bhuidhe of Torloisk, the income from this heifer was joined by the proceeds of the sale of a stick, made by Archie Cameron from Highland horn, which made £1300.