BUYERS old and new vied to secure quality stock of all ages and types at the fortnightly dairy sale at Skipton Auction Mart on Monday.

With 25 buyers taking cattle home from the sale, the 62 cattle though the ring have now gone to new homes from the north of Scotland, to Cheshire in the West and the East coast, and it was the younger animals that were most keenly sought, as well as those freshly calved and in full milk.

Howard Blackburn and family, of nearby Storiths, sold the milking portion of their long-established Wharfedale Holstein herd.

The late Keith Blackburn had laid solid foundations in his Wharfedale herd and this was clear in the stamp of cows that formed this small dispersal of 39 head.

With a quarter of the animals in this section exceeding the £2,000 barrier, it fell to the last lot into the ring to command top price. Stuart Forshaw, of Longridge, went on to £2,280 to secure Wharfedale Generate Poppy, a mid-July fresh heifer by Relough Generate.

She was closely followed by Wharfedale Dreamer Lady, an already VG86 second calver who is due again in mid-January, and was snapped up by Aubrey Greenhalgh for a client.

However, it was regular ringside buyer Brian Blezard, of Ribchester, who took the top-priced animal in this section, a newly-calven heifer at £2,100 from the Harehills herd at Oakworth of Sally Wellock.

One of the highlights of the sale was a consignment of bulling and yearling heifers from mother and son team, Karen and Paul Hutchinson at Scorton, Richmond, and their Whychall pedigree Holstein herd.

These well-grown heifers with great health status saw them heading to three purchasers, while top price was for a high PLI (£426) May 2019 daughter of Westcoast Perseus from the well-known and reliable Roybrook Honey family. She made £1,050 to Robert Johnson, Felliscliffe.

The batch of heifers averaged over £900, with three breaking the £1,000 barrier. Sired by leading bulls such as Attico, Penmanship and Fever, they showed the genuine demand for good quality well-bred young stock.

A small consignment of world-renowned sire’s semen concluded the sale, with Outside, Talent and Shottle sold from David Walker, of Crook, up to £32 per straw.

The next event on the dairy calendar at Skipton, is on Monday, August 24, which will include a consignment of 28 head of Guernseys that form a reduction for Brymor Ltd due to business restructuring from Brymor Ltd, Masham. Call Sarah Liddle on 07710 795585 for a catalogue.

Averages: one cow in milk £1,780, 11 heifers in milk £1,788, two crossbred in-calf heifers £940. Wharfedale dispersal: 24 cows in milk/dry £1,296, including all with fault, 13 heifers in-milk £1,753, overall average on 37 head £1,438. Consignment of 11 bulling and yearling heifers from MR & KM Hutchinson, £911.