JUST shy of 1000 pedigree bulls and females will be up for grabs at United Auctions' Bull Sales at Stirling next month, with the Simmental breed again at the top of the leader board in terms of numbers.

While future trading with the EU is still a hot topic for debate as the Brexit debacle is prolonged even further, life continues more or less as normal for farmers.

As it is, United Auctions' expect to welcome around 12,000 Scottish, UK and international farmers, commercial buyers, pedigree enthusiasts and their families for the February events, which will feature 10 pedigree breeds and are again sponsored by independent property consultants, Galbraith.

With time of the essence for all businesses, this year's February sales more or less follow the same format as previous years, albeit with a day less in the programme. Consequently, the first week witnesses shows and sales of pedigree Aberdeen Angus, Beef Shorthorn, British Blue, Limousin, Lincoln Red and Luings on the Sunday and Monday only.

Round two will see shows and sales of Charolais, Salers and Simmental cattle take place two weeks later but over three days on the Sunday, Monday and Tuesday.

The first show on Sunday, February 2, will see all the native breeds to be sold that week put their best foot forward in the exhibition hall for judging, with the Limousin entries vying for the top tickets on the Monday, followed by a parade of British Blues.

The Monday will be the busiest of all, with all breeds sold through the two separate rings. This kicks off at 10.30am with an entry of 144 Aberdeen Angus bulls followed by 20 females.

The Beef Shorthorn entry follows with 53 females to include the part dispersal of the Wavendon herd (eight cows and six calves) with the four Lincoln Red females coming in behind.

The afternoon schedule comprises the sale of 93 Beef Shorthorn bulls, eight Lincoln Reds and one Luing.

Continental breeds are sold later in the afternoon commencing with four British Blue bulls, 107 Limousin bulls and one Limousin female.

The second round of show and sales from Sunday February, 17 to Tuesday February 19, see the Simmental and Salers breeds judged on the Sunday, with the Charolais entry put through its paces on the Monday.

Simmental females kick off the sales on the Monday at 10.30am with an entry of 59, followed by 29 Salers bulls and 16 Salers females. Simmental bulls (195) are sold from 12noon onwards.

Charolais entries are paraded on the Monday with the entry of 185 bulls and 27 females cashed on the Tuesday from 10.30am onwards. Also included will be the dispersal of the Alsnow herd comprising 15 cows with calves at foot.

John Roberts, United Auctions’ group sales director, said: “With high breed clearances through the Stirling rings in the last few years, there is an increase in numbers forward across the breeds with a great range of genetics on offer from the pedigree females forward, including the dispersal sales.”

Breed judges

Aberdeen-Angus – Tom Arnott, Haymount, Kelso

Beef Shorthorn – James Playfair Hannay, Morebattle Tofts, Kelso

Charolais – Michael Minto, Pillbox Cottage, Loxwood, Billinghurst

Limousin – James Thomson, Hilton of Beath, Kelty

Lincoln Red – Russell Taylor, Middlebank, Errol

Salers – James McDougal, Bassendean, Gordon

Simmental – Steven Sandison, Millburn, Harray, Orkney

Show and sale programme – If space allows ...

Week 1

Friday, February 1

5pm – Yard opens

Saturday, February 2

7am – Yard opens

11.30am – Aberdeen-Angus bull inspection

2pm – Beef Shorthorn bull inspection followed by Lincoln Red and Luing bulls

Sunday, February 3

9.45am – Show of Aberdeen-Angus females followed by bulls

2pm – Limousin bull inspection followed by British Blue bulls

2.30pm – Show of Beef Shorthorn females followed by bulls and show of Lincoln Red bulls and females and parade of Luing bull

Monday, February 4

10am – Show of Limousin bulls followed by parade of British Blue bulls

10.30am – Sale of Aberdeen-Angus bulls (144) followed by females (20)

11am – Sale of Beef Shorthorn females (53) to include the part-dispersal of the Wavendon herd (Eight cows + six calves at foot), followed by sale of Lincoln Red females (four)

1pm – Sale of Beef Shorthorn bulls (93) followed by Lincoln Red (eight) and Luing (one) bulls

3pm – Sale of British Blue bulls (four), Limousin bulls (107) followed by Limousin female (one)

Week 2

Friday, February 15

5pm – Yard opens

Saturday, February 16

7am – Yard opens

12 noon – Simmental bull inspection followed by inspection of Simmental show females

Sunday, February 17

10am – Salers bull inspection

10.30am – Show of Simmental females followed by bulls

11.30am – Charolais bull inspection followed by inspection of Charolais show females

2.30pm – Show of Salers bulls

Monday 18 February

10.30am – Sale of Simmental females (59 + one calf at foot)

11am – Sale of Salers bulls (29) followed by Salers females (16)

12 noon – Show of Charolais females followed by bulls

12 noon – Sale of Simmental bulls (195)

Tuesday, February 19

10.30 am – Sale of Charolais bulls (185) followed by females (27) to include the dispersal of the Alsnow herd (15 cows + 15 calves at foot)