Haltcliffe herd still finds favour in buyers market
By Jeremy Hunt
DEMAND for Limousin bulls from some leading herds suffered at the hands of a very selective ringside at last weekends breed society sale at Carlisle, although entries from the Haltcliffe herd still found favour with those willing to invest heavily.
From a catalogued entry of 334 bulls the final tally saw the auctioneers drawing commission from only 102 deals.
The big entry made it a buyers market – a situation that proved painful for many disappointed vendors – with 102 bulls cheaper by £204 on the year to average £2805. The highest average was £2962 for the 44 intermediate entries – a lift of £68.
Bucking the trend, Cumbria-based father and son team of Matt and Craig Ridley not only managed to stir up the days strongest trade to sell at the top price of 8000gns but also sold their entire string of 10 bulls to average £4044.
The Ridleys Haltcliffe herd from Hesket Newmarket, Wigton, have previously enjoyed big earning and big spending days at Borderway Mart.
At this sale three years ago they paid 15,000gns for Greenwell Major. Last weekend they handsomely recouped that investment with four Major sons in their consignment. The remainder were by Newhouse Lordship.
Top call came for Haltcliffe Picasso, a modern and stretchy sort with an outstanding hindquarter. He was bred out of a Broadmeadows Cannon dam and was bought by Barry and Gill Heald for the 50-cow Coalhouse herd they established at Retford, Notts two years ago.
In pursuance of extreme hindquarter width some breeders had clearly lost scale in their bulls while some of the "thickest" young sires on parade could have been cleaner through the shoulder.
But a bull that had commercial buyers drooling at the sight of his huge back-end and overall power was Gunnerfleet Plunas from Jim Handleys herd at Ingleton on the Lancs-Yorks border.
Hes by Tunnelby Monkeytricks, a bull bought in this ring in 1997 for 10,000gns and already making his mark as one of the breeds leading young sires.
Plunas is out of a Cannon-sired dam – a combination that could prove to be the making of Monkeytricks – and has the £50,000-earning cow Ballyburton Una as granddam.
Buyers at 7000gns were the father and son partnership of John and Michael Fieldson of Gainsborough, Lincs. "We have been looking for a bull like this for two years," commented Mr Fieldson. Another Monkeytricks son made 6900gns to R Partridge, Teignmouth, Devon.
Also at 7000gns was D A Williams Wilodge Profit bought by Cheshire breeders M and P Dawes.
Twenty bulls made 4000gns and over, including the supreme champion Montgomery Owen, a Greensons Gigolo son out of a Cannon cow. Consigned by mid-Wales breeder Richard Jones, he is in the breeds top 1% on performance with a Beef Value of 37. Buyers were Henry Scott and Son, Selkirk.
(Harrison and Hetherington) *