On Wednesday (September 15) Carnaross Mart hosted Taaffe Auctions’ dairy sale, with the sale being the first chance for buyers to purchase freshly calved heifers and cows this autumn. The sale consisted of 139 lots made up of freshly calved heifers and cows, springing heifers, bulling heifers and one high economic breeding index (EBI) bull.

Entries from top herds such as: Cannontown; Ballyelan; Rowantree; Castledermot; Evergrange; Laurelmore; Shanmullagh; and more.

Also included in the sale is the herd dispersal of 33 spring-calving cows from the Francis Bellew herd. The herd was averaging 7,734kg of milk at 4.16% fat and 3.63% protein. The cows on offer were sired by high economic breeding index (EBI) artificial insemination (AI) bulls such as: YAD, SEW, FR2385, FR2371, FR4132, FR2234, FR2298. All the cows were scanned in-calf to Belgian Blue, Hereford and Angus AI bulls.


To garner insight into the trade last week, AgriLand caught up with the auctioneer Michael Taaffe of Taaffe Auctions. Commenting on the sale Taaffe stated: "We saw a brisk trade at Carnaross last Wednesday, with the trade overall for milking animals very much in line with the spring trade. "Top price of the day went to lot 51: Ballyelan Alphaman Alice, she was 16 days calved and milking 35L - sold by Tommy Lynch, Co. Limerick, she made 3,000gns."

The sale also included a milking herd dispersal sale for Francis Bellew, Monasterboice, Co. Louth.

Commenting on this Taaffe stated: "Cows sold to 2,040gns. Top price for this section of the sale went to lot 80, a heifer calved February 2021 and due again in February to Angus. "The sale concluded with springing heifers from Andrew Revington’s Brookfield herd with top price of 2,300gns for lot 104, Brookfield Barcode Eve."


The day after the Carnaross sale, Taaffe auctions hosted its dairy sale in Dungannon farmers market on Thursday (September 16), with 108 lots going under the hammer. The 108 lots were made up of 100 freshly calved heifers and cows, along with eight springing heifers from David Buchanan's Tullyhappy herd, in-calf to sexed semen from AI bulls King Doc, Tatoo and Casper.

The sale included entries from some of Northern Ireland's top herds such as: Ardgonnell, Ards, Bannwater, Carrowcroft, Drumard, Drumgoon, Glasson, Greenisle, Hilltara, Kilvergan, Millfarm and Modelfarm.

Image source: Taaffe auctions

Auctioneers insight

Agriland spoke with the sales auctioneer, Michael Taaffe after the sale. He stated: "The trade at Dungannon topped at 3,000gns, with the top price going to the champion heifer from the pre-sale show lot 20, Kilvergan Piston Blossom. "Sold by T.S. Haffey & Sons, this beautiful heifer was one month calved and giving 39L. "Reserve champion was a substitute entry, Ards Kenobi Trina from D & W Patton. This heifer was three weeks calved and milking 27L.
Backed by ten generations VG/EX dams, she was purchased for 2,780gns by the Co. Armagh farmer who also secured the champion heifer earlier in the sale."
Taaffe continued: "Overall dairy trade was somewhat back on the previous May sale reflecting a number of the entries being longer calved from June and July. "Trade for springing heifers topped at 2,450gns for lot 103, Ardnasalem YKS Robin, due to calve in October. "This heifer was backed by four generations of EX dams from the famous Roxy family."
Lot: 103 Ardnasalem YKS Robin