Farmer Focus: May bull sales cater for two markets

The weather has been kind for the hill lambing and it has been near perfect for growing.

Winter crops are looking very healthy for this time of year and the grass has flourished after the heavy sheep stocking over the winter.

Fencing repairs are complete, and cattle are currently running around the green fields – one of the special sights we get to witness during the farming year.

We had Limousin bulls forward to both Carlisle and Stirling sales this month. It is becoming noticeable that these sales are now catering for two quite different types of cattle.

Bulls with huge back ends, smaller frames and lighter weights are selling well south of the border, but larger, heavier, more correct bodied cattle are the choice of the buyers in the North.

We wonder, would this all change if store cattle in the borders area were to be sold over the weight bridge as they are in the North?

The top-end bulls at Carlisle were outstanding, with quite a few heading into pedigree herds and a credit to their vendors.

The concrete area at the front of our silage pit is getting an extension to provide a larger dumping area, and hopefully it will prevent the gravel yard ending up in the pit. We have failed to reach the back of the pit with a small amount of feed still there.

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This year’s silage was a nutritional success; the crop failure of the winter barley due to snow rot last spring provided an excellent feed, along with red clover, so we plan to do the same again this year.

The hill lambing is nearing completion and according to shepherd Brian it’s all gone well, but stealing cheviots were making themselves slightly unpopular.

The ewe hoggs are now thriving out on the heather hill, with plenty of horn growth since branding.

The sheds are to be mucked and washed out, and hopefully whitewashed, all in time for the East Area Young Farmers’ family stock judging day to be held here on 25 May, so it’s all hands on deck – let the spring cleaning begin.

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.

 


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