A cow and calf outfit that netted vendors Mike and Chris Candy a total of 4000gns topped the recent dispersal of the Highlight herd of 182 Brown Swiss cattle at Beeston Castle mart, Cheshire.
At 2400gns the dam Highlight Honeysuckle Florence (VG88) was buyers’ clear favourite. Sired by R Hart TC Denmark and out of a Ensign dam she’d shown early promise on the regional show circuit. Now with her third calf – born in October 2006 – and giving 33kg milk she was taken by established Brown Swiss supporter Kevin Thomas for his Allstar herd based at Tavernspite, Whitland, South Wales.
Mr Thomas couldn’t match local support for the next lot to enter the ring when Wem, Shropshire-based dairy farmer David Burden took Florence’s calf, Highlight Dalton Honeysuckle 2, sired by Hilltop Acres PT Dalton for 1600gns.
However, Mr Thomas was not to be out-done quickly following his initial purchase with a further three of the top ten-priced cows at 1700gns, 1500gns and 1400gns all journeying across the border to Whitland. Other South Wales-based buyers were in contention. Clive Davies of Narberth, Pembrokeshire, paid the day’s second highest price of 1750gns for a smart in-calf heifer, Highlight Dalton Honeysuckle, to join his Garne herd. This heifer is due in November carrying its second calf this time to Top Acres Brinks.
In-calf heifers were in demand with David Burden snapping up the April 2005-born Highlight Supreme Glitter sired by Garne K Acres Supreme at 1720gns. This heifer enjoyed a successful summer show season last year taking 1st prize in the senior heifer classes at both the Cheshire and Nantwich Show.
And it wasn’t long before Clive Davies claimed another for his Garne herd, this time taking Highlight Dynasty Bella 2, recently AI’d to the US sire Top Acres Blue Chip ET, at 1600gns.
The day’s volume buyer was Robert McColm of Stranraer, Scotland, who took 16 head. Topping his selection was a maiden heifer – a daughter of R Harts Christians Ace – that sold for 920gns.
Averages: 100 cows/milking heifers £1176.31; 25 in-calf/served heifers £1047.90 and 20 maiden heifers £652.58. (Wright Manley)