Farmers move online to source bulls

With the oncoming breeding season fast approaching on early-calving dairy enterprises, farmers are moving to alternative ways to source breeding bulls for the season ahead.

This change in tactics has been initiated by the Covid-19 pandemic, which has put a stop to breeding bull sales that were due to take place across the country over the coming weeks.

As a result, an online platform – the Irish Cattle Breeding Federation’s (ICBF) ‘Stockbull Finder’ – has witnessed a substantial jump in the number of farmers trying to locate suitable bulls in their locality.

According to the ICBF, 2,800 farmers clicked onto the platform in a five-day period from March 21 to March 26, which is the highest weekly hit rate that has ever been achieved since its launch.

Bulls on the ‘Stockbull Finder’ are owned by breeders that voluntarily take part in the on-farm performance recording programme – namely Whole Herd Performance Recording (WHPR).


This is not the only online tool that has witnessed substantial growth since the onset of the Covid-19 restrictions. Haystack has also witnessed a large number of livestock advertised for sale since marts have been disrupted.

During these challenging times, Haystack is allowing farmers with livestock to buy or sell a free trading platform – in a bid to ease some of the pressure on farmers with cattle to move.

Haystack is a relatively new platform and, from March 18, the number of livestock on offer has jumped substantially and continues to do so. Click here for Haystack