New & Updates
Blonde National Show 2015 at Royal Balmoral
McElroys' with Invaniskey Denise
Strong numbers of quality cattle were out on parade as the Blondes held their sixth National show, this year at the Royal Balmoral show.
Rhydian Davies of the Fronfedw herd from Lampeter, West Wales judged a fine line up of cattle. Taking the eye of the judge for the second year running was senior cow Ivaniskey Denise who was to be crowned Champion Blonde from I & R McElroy and son from Dromore, Co.Down. A Doncombe Agha Khan daughter born October 2008, with calf at foot opened the show season in great style picking up numerous trophies at the presentation dinner including the Perpetual challenge cup and the National Show Trophy presented by the McElroy family.
Reserve champion ribbons were awarded to junior cow Drumraymond Hidi Ho exhibited by H. Griffin and family born May 2012 sired by Frondedw Arawn who received the Wilson Perpetual challenge trophy.
The Savage Bros were delighted that their Senior heifer Shanvalley Input born March 2013 and daughter of Seaview Barney took the red ribbons, lifting the Andrews perpetual challenge trophy.
Budore Ila born September 2013 sired by Budore Utah exhibited by P.McGarry won her class lifting the Hillhead trophy for intermediate heifer. Stablemate Budore Jessie born May 2014 sired by Budore Floyd was following in her footsteps in the line of success by lifting the DSB Farm supplies trophy for the junior heifer class as well as the ‘Miss Future’ F.I.E.R.B.A trophy for the under 24 month old heifer.
The senior bull class was won by Drumraymond Grafter exhibited and owned by M Savage from Co.Down who lifted the Drumraymond Blondes perpetual trophy.
Shanvalley Jagger born April 2014 sired by Seaview Barney, started his day by lifting the M R Rodgers perpetual challenge trophy in the Junior bull class before going on to take the Junior championship.
A new calf class was added due to the attendance of the National show, this was well supported with P McGarry taking top spot with Budore Jim-Bob sired by Budore Floyd born July ’14. Having won this class Jim-Bob went on to join Budore Jameson to win the pairs class.
The society presented a sash to the best Blonde animal amongst other commercial animals; this was won by Martin Rodgers from Hillhead Blondes, ‘Smokey’ born October ’14 sired by Sauveur.
The Blondes welcomed fourteen international visitors from France who were extremely interested in the traits that we are looking for in the British Blondes.
We would like to take this opportunity of thanking all of our sponsors for their support in bringing the National show to Balmoral.
Professional photos to follow
HARRISON & HETHERINGTON LIMITED, CARLISLE
SATURDAY 9th MAY 2015
PEDIGREE SALES – BLONDE CATTLE
Heading up the Blonde Society Spring show and sale held at Carlisle was Hallfield Ipad sold by P Weightman & Sons of Peterlee, Co.Durham for 3,200gns.
Hallfield Ipad top price 3200gns
Ipad is a 22 month old son of Ardmore Fugitive and is bred out of Hallfield Dizzy a Blackwater Ainsley sired mother. He caught the attention of DB & SA Lawson of Tunstall, Richmond.
Following at 3,000gns was the reserve junior male champion, Hallfield Ironic II, also shown by Messrs Weightman. Ironic is an 18 month old son of the herds senior stock sire, Blackwater Ainsley, and out of the homebred mother Canary a Doncombe Ayers Rock bred daughter. Ironic was purchased by JJ Horn of Richmond, N.Yorkshire for his Bushypark Herd.
Hallfield Idris Champion
Ivaniskey Ivan Skavinsky Skiho Reserve champion
Ivaniskey Jiggledy Piggledy Champion Female
An early entry to the sale ring from Alison Watt of Keith, Banffshire was knocked down at 2,800gns. This senior bull, Strathisla Icarus, is a son of the imported bull Super and is out of one of the herds show cows Strathisla Venus. Icarus himself had a very successful show season during 2014. He sold to JE Anderson & Son of Elsdon, Newcastle upon Tyne.
Champion and reserve with sponsor Robert Wharton and judge Jo Greenall
Also selling for 2,800gns was another entry from Messrs Weightman. This was a junior bull, Hallfield I-phone, another Blackwater Ainsley bred son and out of a Ballygowan Noble sired mother Hallfield Tilly. He was knocked down to R & H Braid for their Leithanhall herd based at Moffat, Dumfriesshire.
A sole entry from L Laird & Sons of Fife was sold for 2,700gns. The homebred senior bull, Lochhead Impressive, a son of Freefield E-Tay and bred from Lochhead Fairy, was purchased by local enthusiasts C Bousfield & Sons of Appleby-in-Westmorland.
Heading up the female entries was an in-calf entry coming from MAG McSporran of Innerleithan, Peebleshire. Eilean Isla carries some of the best bloodlines produced from the herd. She is a homebred daughter of the noted sire Eilean Godfather and out of Eilean Rascal who also produced the 9,000gn Eilean Fergus. Isla sold in calf to Bridge Elmo and was sold to MJ Whitworth for his Mountpleasant herd based near Carnforth, Lancs.
Averages - 9 Bulls £2741.67, 4 Females £1863.75.
WORCESTER BLONDES HIT 4,000gns
Champion and top priced bull 4000gns Aaron Insengard
The British Blonde Cattle Society Annual Spring Show & Sale at Worcester recorded a spirited, if somewhat selective, trade and topped at a very creditable 4,000gns for the preceding Male and Overall Champion in the show “Aaron Insengard” a 2 year old bull by “Bridge Cracker Jack” out of a homebred cow “Aaron Ethanstar” by the French sire “Mir” from Nick Rogers, Powys based herd and eventually secured by A & B Bowden, Exeter, Devon.
Female Champion Cosdon Izabellah
Senior champion Cosdon Istanbul
Another two year old bull ”Samoht Ike” from Paul Thomas enjoyed a close following, having won first prize in his class he was knocked down at 3,850gns to RJ Barrett & Co, Bromyard, Herefordshire.
Regular and keen supporters of the Blonde breed and the Worcester sale, G. Collin Farms, Gore Cross, Wilts made their presence felt and purchased 3 bulls topping at 3,500gns for Dan Davies’ “Fronfedw Israel” First and Reserve Junior Male Champion and also “Fronfedw Hywell Dda” from the same vendor at 3,350gns. The third purchase was for the youngest bull in the sale “Doncombe Jodocus” a First prize winner out of the Reserve Continental Interbreed winner, Berkshire Show, “Doncombe Fascienne” from David Knight’s Bristol based herd at 3,150gns.
Females were in good demand selling to 1,920gns for “Egerton Gallica” with heifer calf from Jones & Garratt to D.W. Hicks, Coventry, Warks and Maiden Heifers to 1,420gns twice for “Nantygelli Julie” from S. Pegington and “Doncombe Joyful” from D Knight to A. Bailey, Lancaster and A Westcott, Roadwater, Somerset respectively.
Pauline Williams and Peter Holman
recieving the senior bull trophy from David Barker
Peter Holman and David Barker
Nick Rogers presented with champion trophy
17 Bulls av: £2,868.97
1 Cow & calf av: £2,016.00
8 Maiden Heifers av: £1,235.06
McCartneys LLP, Worcester
Tel: 01905 769770
Drive to Produce Quality Pays Dividends for Hallfield Blondes
James Weightman endeavours to add value to the bulls in his herd of British Blonde cattle.
“We try to produce an animal suited to our customers’ demands,” said James. It is clear to see that this approach is providing results on his County Durham farm with three of his bulls topping the British Blonde Society show and sale at Carlisle recently. Hallfield bulls are in demand, both from commercial and pedigree producers.
The British Blonde herd at Hallfield Farm is long-established, with James’ father, Peter, importing the first heifers from France in 1974. The farm itself has been in the family since the 1960s, with the majority of land being used to grow cereals and some permanent pasture set aside for the beef breeding enterprise. Cattle numbers have grown from the small herd originally established and for the last 10 years around 40 calves have been registered each year.
The target buyer for Hallfield Blondes’ stock is a commercial producer and any animals sold to fellow pedigree producers is regarded as an added bonus.
“I believe that providing assurance to customers that they are purchasing high quality stock, with minimal risk is crucial for successful bull selling,” said James. Herd health and a disease-free status is a key focus on the farm and the entire herd is part of SRUCs Premium Cattle Health Scheme. The herd has been performance recorded by Signet since 1994 and this offers even more assurance to customers.
Hallfield Iron Man sold at Carlisle for 5000 gns
The collection of valuable performance information year on year has meant that the cattle James perceives to be real performers have moved to the top of the EBV rankings. This allows his customers to see exactly what genetics they are buying. Some of James’s best prices have come from animals with good figures, for example Hallfield Ironman, who sold for 5,000 guineas at Carlisle this year, stands in the top 10 per cent of the breed in terms of muscle depth. EBVs also aid in-breeding decisions at Hallfield farm with Hallfield Uproar, a homebred female with phenomenal genetic merit – Maternal Value in the top 1% of the breed and Beef Value in the top 10%, being one of the cows retained that went on to produce 9 calves.
It is not just the very top end of the Hallfield herd that have benefited from performance recording; the entire herd‘s genetics are being assessed. Performance recording has allowed James to breed for visual traits and production traits that are difficult to assess by eye. The average calving ease value for the entire herd is now in the top 25 per cent for the breed, as is the muscle depth EBV. Growth traits for the entire herd are also above the breed average. This shows that balancing traits such as growth and muscle with performance recording does not have to compromise ease of calving. Although useful as a herd management tool, James believes that the future of performance recording lies in the hands of bull buyers, he said: “It is the greater demand and understanding of EBVs from the commercial buyers that is absolutely key to widespread use of the technology.”
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