Suffolk ram comes out on top at Sheep Ireland’s sale

Sheep Ireland hosted its annual EuroStar Multi-breed Ram Sale in Tullamore Mart on Saturday, August 26.

This year’s sale boosted a record entry and some 306 rams were catalogued; each of which were 5-star on either the terminal or replacement index, with a minimum accuracy of 35%.

Dubbed as the ‘ideal sale for commercial farmers to pick up their next stock ram’, the event featured rams from six different breeds including: Vendeen; Suffolk; Charollais; Texel; Belclare; and Rouge de l’Ouest rams.

A clearance of 84% was recorded across the entire sale and an average price of €540 was achieved on the day.

A Suffolk ram tops the sale

Topping the sale was Susan O’Keeffe’s Suffolk ram. The son of Rookery Classic boasted 5-stars on the terminal index and sold to Michael McKiernan, Co. Westmeath for €940.

Image source: Sheep Ireland

52 Suffolk rams passed through the ring and a 96% clearance rate was achieved. Rams sold for €280-940 and an average price of €582 was paid for the Suffolk tups on offer.

Vendeen rams reach €910

13 Vendeen rams also went under the hammer and a top price of €910 was paid for Ciaran Coughlan’s Noggus Robben.

Sired by Quitrent Odo, and out of a Tallagh Larry daughter, Robben is ranked within the top 11% of the breed on the terminal index. Like the top-priced Suffolk, Robben also headed to Co. Westmeath after being purchased by Michael McGrath.

Image source: Sheep Ireland

Of the 13 Vendeen rams on offer, 11 found new homes and they sold for an average price of €526 – ranging from €380 right the way up to €910.

Image source: Sheep Ireland

€420 average for Rouge de l’Ouest tups

Well-known Wexford Breeder Anne Murphy held four of the entries in the Rouge de l’Ouest section of the sale.  These rams sold for an average price of €420 and a top price of €480 was paid for Foundry High And Mighty.

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The February-2017 born ram held 5-star ratings on both the terminal and replacement indexes, with accuracies of 42% and 37% respectively.

Foundry High And Mighty pictured on Anne Murphy’s farm one week before the sale. Image source: Sheep Ireland

Murphy doubles up

Along with topping the Rouge de l’Ouest section, one of Murphy’s Texel rams, Foundry Amadeus, also topped the Texel section of the sale.

Sired by Greenhill Yemen Boy, the January-2017 born ram was purchased by Patrick Concannon, Co. Roscommon, for €780.

Image source: Sheep Ireland

According to Sheep Ireland, the ram had an excellent days to slaughter index (top 5% of the Texel breed) and he was also 5-star on both the terminal and replacement indexes.

Overall, some 70 Texel tups passed through the ring. A clearance rate of 89% was recorded and these rams sold for an average price of €540 (€300 up to a top price of €780).

Charollais rams out in force

Charollais rams were out in force and the breed boasted the largest entry of the sale. Maria Philpott’s ram, a son of Lisfuncheon Edward, topped the Charollais section of the sale at €750.

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Overall, 73% of all of the Charollais rams on offer found new homes and an average price of €491 was paid on the day.

Belclare rams in demand

Some 23 Belclare rams passed through the ring and an excellent clearance rate of 87% was achieved; meaning that 20 of the tups on offer found new homes for an average price of €586.

Topping the sale was John Renehan’s Violet Hill Baola. Sired by a homebred ram, Baola held 5-star ratings on both the terminal and replacement indexes.

Violet Hill Baola pictured at the Sheep Ireland CPT centre in Lyons Estate in 2016. Image source: Sheep Ireland

The January-2016 born ram was a past participant in the Sheep Ireland CPT (Central Progeny Test) programme and was purchased by well-known Belclare breeders Eoghan and Larry Barrett for €880.

Image source: Sheep Ireland