There were multiple ovine highlights at Skipton Auction Mart’s annual multi-breeds sale of 754 head of rams and females, minus the usual shows and staged over two days to assist with Covid-19 safe distancing regulations, a new format that was well received.
A total of 195 sheep went under the hammer on the opening day, among them a strong contingent of Suffolks, a section where buyers were looking for powerful rams ready to work, particularly with North of England Mule sheep in the light of another good year trading prime lambs and ewe lambs.
Regular consignments attracted their usual followings. Of the Suffolk shearling rams, Skipton’s Geoff, Margaret and Alistair Lawn were among the high prices with entries selling at 850gns, 700gns, 620gns and 550gns, producing a solid pen average of £475.
From South Yorkshire, John Key, of Midhopstones, sold shearlings to 650gns and 500gns twice, with Ben Hardcastle of Middlesmoor in Nidderdale, not far behind at 640gns. Shearling rams averaged £409, a rise of £5 per head on the year.
While Suffolk ram lambs averaged £324, back £20 on the year, Stephen Bolland, of Bolton Abbey, caught the eye when producing a pen to average a solid £459, with a top call of 600gns and further sales at 550gns twice. Regular Derbyshire consignor Steve Buckley, from Dove Holes, sold ram lambs to 450gns, with Ben Hardcastle also producing quality ram lambs to 380gns.
A mixed sale of Continental tups in the MV sheep section also attracted regular vendors and a good contingent of buyers keen to try out some powerful tups with both size and frame. Texel-x-Suffolk shearling rams sold well, all making 380gns-480gns, with section a top of 720gns for a pure Rouge shearling ram from Angela Nairey in Luisey, Blackburn.
Charollais rams also sold well to regular purchasers seeking to service both tupping hoggs and ewes. Annual vendor Charles Marwood, of the Foulrice flock in Whenby, York, topped a well-sold run at 420gns with a shearling ram, with many other strong Charollais shearlings selling from 300-400gns, one at this price from Welshman Wynne Davies, of Bronhalt, Pwllheli. The section averaged £336. Charollais ram lambs were in demand too, the majority making 200-300gns, with an overall average of £294.
Blue Texel shearling tups were comfortably sold to 380gns for one from Skipton’s Chris Windle, the section averaging £399, and while ram lambs were less sought after some made 200gns-plus at an overall average of £213. However, Blue Texel ewe lambs sold to a more active audience at around 240-350gns – this for one H&J Dean in Selby - averaging £318.
Texel-x rams regularly sold at 300gns-plus, with Wynne Davies again to the fore with a price-topping 450gns sale, while Beltex tups sold to 480gns for a South Yorkshire-bred entry from Stuart Calvert, of Doncaster. Also making 480gns was a Texel-x-Suffolk shearling ram from Pam Lupton, of Ripon.
Of the other breeds sold on the opening day, Cheviot sold to 370gns (£331) and Hampshire to 220gns (av £231).
Further information: Robin Moule on 07976 559961