Farmer Focus: All ready for livestock sales

I have just returned from a superb weekend spent escorting the boys to the Aberdeen Angus Youth Development Programme final in Northern Ireland.

Run by the Aberdeen Angus Cattle Society, it encourages kids aged eight to 24 to learn more about managing cattle for the show ring. This year over 200 participants joined in with workshops all over the UK and the top 30 headed to the Northern Irish final. It was a huge chance to be educated by the experts and compete at a national level, while also enjoying the social side of it all. I would highly recommend this programme to any youngsters interested in the stockmanship side of the industry.

Our Mule lamb project was positive; we received £114 for our pen of 20, and £60 for some of the Mule wether lambs. As a result more ewes will be put to the Bluefaced Leicester tups this backend. The boys also felt this result could justify buying a new stock tup for their 12 pure ewes and so we headed to the famous Kelso ram sales. Andrew was given the task of bidding and managed to get a nice true Blue shearling at £2,000, picked out of the Kirkstead pen.

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Various tup sales are just around the corner and we have Bluefaced Leicester ram lambs to sell, then we have some Blackface shearlings heading to Stirling. However, we will be the new kids on the block when we head up to Lairg for the first time with four two-shear Cheviot rams – a new undertaking, which will hopefully all go well. The fattening lambs are now all down from the glen grazing at Newhouse and enjoying some heavy crops of red clover before heading on to stubble turnips.

The harvest has gone well, the grain was all sold on contract and most has been uplifted, the beans were combined at their driest yet, making plenty of noise as they entered the combine tank. Winter crops are all in the ground and the newly sown grass is looking well. Attention is now on the six red and three black Limousin heifers we have for sale at the October bull sales.

Bob and Kay Adam run 100 pedigree Limousin and Charolais cows on their 222ha family farm in Angus and rent a 728ha hill farm running 640 ewes and 30 suckler cows