The Jalex herd dispersal on behalf of Nelson and James Alexander, Randalstown, County Antrim, saw prices peak at £4,100 when the whole spring/summer calving herd went under the hammer at Ballymena on Saturday (21 March).

It represented one of the biggest sales of suckler cows for many years attracted buyers from right across the UK and Ireland.  Quality was in abundance, resulting in spirited bidding right from the word go.

Sale leader was a black cow – the greatly admired mother of Eddie Rocket who won Allams in 2013. Shehas been a consistent performer in the Jalex herd and was highly sought after in the auction ring. The hammer fell to Lloyd Fowlie, Aberdeenshire.

The Jalex suckler dispersal topped at £4100 paid for this outstanding Limousin cow

The same purchaser also bought a super Black N Blue Diesel sired cow carrying in calf to Swarland Eddie at £2,450.

There were more than 50 lots purchased for export to the mainland with the largest consignment heading to CDC Farm and Machinery, Lincolnshire.

John Smith-Jackson paid £3,800 for a Blue cow sired by Bassingfield Hobama. This has been a prominent breeder for the Alexanders.  Another well-muscled Blue cow caught the eye of J and R Owen, Anglesey, who paid £3,000. This 2006 born cow sold in calf to Swarland Eddie who has bred many high-priced stock to date.

Potential show calves were in fierce demand with a lead call of £3,100. This was paid for a smashing roan daughter of Swarland Eddie. She was snapped up by Richard Duffy, Westport.

Cows with calves at foot topped at £3,250 for a blonde bred cow and her Charolais bull calf. Stock bulls reached £3,000 forked out by Nugent Estates for a British Blue.

Bidding was brisk throughout with 228 cows levelling at £1,758.

(JA McClelland, Ballymena Mart).