There was a drop in averages in the Aberdeen-Angus ring at the Stirling Bull Sales yesterday with the breed society’s chief executive Ron McHattie blaming the last 11 months of depressed beef prices for a drop in the average of more than £1,000 on the year.
He said that the continued shift to spring calving makes this a difficult time of year to sell bulls.
A clearance rate of 66% meant 32 bulls sold to average £4,472 compared with 18 bulls last year which averaged £5,466.
Mr McHattie was encouraged however by a good trade for females which saw 19 average £2,553.
The highlight of the sale was Neil Wattie’s junior champion, Tonley Pato, which went on to take supreme of the show and also make the day’s top price of 12,000gn to pedigree breeder Jan Boomars, Heathdown, Woldingham.
This son of the 8,000gn Blelack Evor and out of Tonley Princess was reserve champion at Turriff show in the summer.
Judge Ian Mathers, Wardes, Kintore said his champion was easy to find but ultimately it was the overall reserve from Alastair and Graeme Fraser, Idvies, Forfar, which he bought for 6,500gn having described him as “a lean bull which will be a good beef breeder when it is older”.
Idvies Johnston Eric was by Kirriemuir show champion, Shadwell Black Broughton and out of Idvies Juana Erica.
Another to make 6,500gn was Victor Dobson’s Water End Payton by Blelack Evergreat out of Water End Prudence. The Dobsons’ only run 10 cows at Water End farm near York and this one has been at livery at Richard and Carol Rettie’s for the summer, coming second at the Great Yorkshire Show. He was purchased by pedigree and commercial breeder Charlie Gorn, Weddell, Burray, Orkney.
JAC First Class, a first place bull by HF El Tigre and out of Netherton Frances from A Cuthbertson and Son, Wester Balgair, Balfron, made 6,200gn to the Scottish Government’s bull stud based at Knocknagael near Inverness.
The senior champion from Bill Bruce, Logie, Ellon, made 6,000gn to James Hamilton, Headsmuir, Carluke. Logie Prize Bruce was by the 12,000gn Glenbuchat Bruce which was senior champion at Perth three years ago.
Another Orkney buyer – Neil Rendall, Holland, Pappa Westray – paid 5,800gs for the reserve junior champion Cairnton Blackcap, by Blelack Kanasta Lad from Ken and Margaret Howie, Cairnton, Lumphanon, Banchory.
A small draft from John Elliot’s Rawburn herd at Roxburgh Mains, Kelso, saw females sold to 6,000gn with a further three at 5,000gn or above.
The top price was for Rawburn Ella, a 30 month-old heifer by Rawburn Double Oseven, in-calf to Rawburn Boss. She went in a joint deal to Highland Wagu, Dunblane and Alastair and Graeme Fraser, Newton of Idvies, Forfar.
Young breeder Stephanie Dick, Westerton, Cowie, paid 5,200gn for Rawburn Ellen Erica, a two-year-old heifer by Oakchurch Field Marshall.
Overall Champion and Junior – Neil Wattie, Mains of Tonley, Alford, with Tonley Pato by Blelack Evor. Reserve and Intermediate – Alastair and Graeme Fraser, Newton of Idvies, Forfar, with Idvies Johnston Eric by Shadwell Black Broughton.
Senior Champion – Bill Bruce, Logie, Ellon, with Logie Prize Bruce by Glenbuchat Bruce. Reserve – Victor Dobson, Water End Farm, Holme-on-Spalding, York, with Water End Payton by Blelack Evergreat.
Intermediate reserve – AJ and WM Norrie’s Wrae Proud Innsbruck, from Wrae Farm, Turriff, and sired by Bore Well Eastern Flame. The bull was bought by judge Ian Mathers for 3,200gn.
Junior Reserve – Ken and Margaret Howie, Cairnton, Banchory, with Cairnton Blackcap by Blelack Kanasta Lad.
Female – Henk Rennie, Westfield of Ardoyne, Insch, with Ardoyne Royal Lavender by Blelack Black Rod. Reserve – Gordon Gray, Sunnycroft, Selkirk, with Ettrick Rachel by Rawburn Elmer.