The suckler sale achieved the better prices of the two sales at Newport Mart on Monday, with quality suckler-bred cows with calves at foot easily making in the region of €1,500 each.

The dairy sale started shortly after 11.00 and continued right through until 15.30. There was a mix of individual lots and clearance sales. The general run of the dairy sale could be best described as slower relative to previous years.

The dairy stock on sale were very mixed, with poor prices for smaller lots and later-calvers right up to €1,400 and €1,500 for well-grown, well-bred and February-calving heifers.

Paul Keane from Murroe in Limerick sold some nice cows that had recently calved. In general they made relatively good money, ranging from €1,200 to over €1,500.

The Leahy clearance was the first of the clearance sales and prices ranged from €730 for a 10-year-old Friesian cow calving in March right up to €1,350 for a first-calver calving in February. All cows were all in calf to AI and due to calve mostly in March.

The second clearance sale was for Pat Malone from just outside Nenagh, Co Tipperary. The spring-calving Friesian herd is in calf to Angus and Hereford AI from Dovea AI. The British Friesian herd had a co-op report of 4.35% fat and 3.51% protein for 2021 with an SCC average of 162,000. First into the ring was a 2016-born cow in calf to Hereford AI, due mid-February, and she made €1,300. The rest of her comrades followed suit and made from €750 for older cows all the way up to €1,300.

Some individual lighter-type in-calf dairy heifers made down as far as €750 to €800 for March-calving two-year-olds.

Suckler sale

The sucklers started at 15.30 in the same ring once the dairy stock were finished and hit a flying trade from the start. Nice-quality two-year-old continental type heifers easily made €1,350 to €1,400 calving in March and April.

A batch of 11 genuine suckler-type heifers calving in February and March made between €1,370 and €1,630. Most of them were nice red Limousins born in December 2019 so were going to be calving down at two years and six months old.

The next batch of 12 to sell were all bucket-reared heifers in calf to an easy-calving Limousin for Tony Ryan of Newport and they made between €1,300 and €1,400 each.

The highlight of the sale didn’t arrive until after 5pm when Sean Ryan from Cappamore offered a 2016-born pedigree Limousin cow and her June-born heifer calf. She lit up the largely commercial suckler sale, making €3,710 in the ring. Her herd comrade followed her in with a heifer calf and she made €2,670.

Older suckler cows in calf that were eight to 10 years old in general made €900 to €1,200.

Full report in print this week.