National Trust Red Ruby Devons in demand

The oldest registered herd of Red Ruby Devons attracted both old and new breeders to the first production sale to take place at Home Farm Kingston Lacy Wimborne, Dorset since the herd was established in 1894.

The herd originally formed by the Bankes family was left to the National Trust with the property in 1981 with the provision that they had to be kept with their horns on.

The in-calf cows were keenly sought after, due in the spring and with deep pedigrees, prices soared above those seen all year. The most attractive lots were those cows by the modern type bull Thorndale Assirati EX92 EBV 30 and out of dams sired by Bywood Classic 3rd. Mrs Ruth Armashaw, Shaftsbury, Dorset made her entrance into the breed in true style taking 12 of the 41 females on offer including the two leading priced animals, Kingston Lacy Actress 12th and Ambrosia 13th (2005 & 2006 born) both out of dams classified VG, who were Assirati x Classic 3rd daughters selling at £2730 and £2625.

Mrs Armashaw also took the top priced heifer calf Kingston Lacy Vanity 13th a March born daughter of Kingston Lacy Henry(son of Assirati) at £800. This heifer’s dam Vanity 8th had not long passed through the ring selling at £2310 to J and R Hooper, Salisbury Wilts for their Essesborne herd. The same buyer also took Kingston Lacy Wildcat 13th a March 2004 daughter of Assirati PD’d in-calf to Whitefield Gullabull at £1732.

Andrew Lane of Iddesleigh Devon conducted the sale on behalf of the National Trust. Mr Lane commented that the sale had attracted a lot of interest with buyers keen to secure modern classified cattle out of traditionally bred cows getting the best of both worlds. Both type classification and performance recording had played an important role in attracting new breeders to the sale.

Round bale silage sold at £12 per bale.

Averages: 21 cows £1270; 7 2010 heifers £736; 13 2011 heifers £651;10 2011 steers £447