ONE of Scotland's rarest native breeds has completed an on-line show – and the good news is there were more than 90 entries from 33 breeders for the Shetland cattle event.

Organised jointly by the two breed organisations, the Shetland Cattle Breeders Association and the Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society, the event had been inspired by the success of several Shetland cattle which had been placed in the RBST Native Breed classes in a show earlier this year.

Albin Smith, chair of SCBA told The SF: “Congratulations to everyone who entered the Shetland cattle online show and of course to those whose animals were placed! Special thanks must go to those individuals from the SCBA and SCHBS who set up and ran the show, and delivered such an uplifting event.

"I was impressed by the quality of animals entered, showcasing the best of the breed. Hopefully, this will become a regular feature of the Shetland owners’ year, and those owners who didn't manage any entries this year will be inspired to have a go in the next one.”

Judges were organised by the SCHBS and judging took place between mid-August and 'show day' on September 5, when all the prize winners were announced. There were 10 cattle classes plus the championship and a fun photography class.

Eleanor Arthur, for the SCHBS, said: “The quality of the cattle was good overall though judging from photographs was a new experience and posed challenges for both exhibitors and judges. But it was an enjoyable and worthwhile event in lockdown and may even have a longer-term future!”

Sheena Anderson, Ollaberry, Shetland, picked up the championship with seven-year-old Collafirth Babbie and her pure-bred heifer calf, Collafirth Back Betty. Sheena also won the SCBA Margaret Wolfendale Memorial Trophy for the top exhibitor.

Babbie is no stranger to success in the show ring, standing Shetland champion at Cunningsburgh Show for the past three years and overall cattle champion in two of those years.

Best senior cow was the 10-year-old Collafirth Merlot, exhibited by Kathleen Anderson, Ollaberry, Shetland, while the best yeld heifer was from Ruth Dalton, Cumbria, with Whinpot Frosty, and she also showed the best senior bull, Ustaness Xerxes.

The organisers said they were now taking a breather, but will review the event, seeking feedback from all involved and considering what route to take next. But for a rare breed that is dispersed all over the British Isles and further afield, the on-line show had already proved a great way for breeders and owners to come together in a way not possible via a physical show, said the organisers.