Mart tales wing their way along electronic route from Singapore to Skibbereen

You can thank the man from Singapore this week that you have a mart report to peruse. But for the man from Singapore, you could well be looking at a blank page.
Mart tales wing their way along electronic route from Singapore to Skibbereen

And the cause of this near calamity was due, not to the flooding, but that other bone of contention here in rural Ireland, namely the lack of reliable broadband.

Normally in the hills of Kilmichael our broadband is frustratingly slow, like an old mule carrying a drunk fat man up a stony incline, the pace can be anything but brisk.

But this week the mule must have keeled over, or the fat man must have died, because our broadband disappeared completely, leaving people like me stranded.

So here in rural Ireland this week, our rivers overflowed and our internet dried up. And they say this country of ours is on the road to recovery!

Anyway a solution came, not from throwing ‘loads of money’ in the direction of a bling covered councillor, but in a phone call I made to a broadband helpline.

And so it was to a man in faraway Singapore, or someplace, that I went for help.

He may have been a long way from Béal na Bláth, his English may not have been good, and the phoneline may have crackled as he spoke, but the man from Singapore had all the answers to getting my broadband up and running once again.

“Press this,” says he, “type that,” he suggested, as if he were looking over the shoulder of this well respected mart reporter, and not back home in Singapore.

Before long he had broadband back in this house once again.

The mart report was saved and it was all thanks to the man from Singapore.

So from Singapore we go first to Skibbereen where the mart had its annual Fat Stock Show and Sale on Friday last.

And even the man from Singapore, who may not have a great knowledge of the livestock business, would have had to admit that it was quite a show.

A packed main ring once again saw quality in spades.

The Fat Stock Show Champion was a Belgian Blue heifer weighing 710kg and owned by John Cullinane of Ballineen. This animal sold for €3,000.

The Reserve Champion in Skibbereen was a Charolais heifer weighing 790kg, owned by Dave Hegarty this heifer sold for €2,820.

And on Friday in Skibbereen dry cows in general sold from €150 under to €600 over the kilo with an exceptional cow making €1,180 over the kilo.

Heifers in Skibbereen made from €300 to €800 with the kilo. Bullocks ranged in price from €350 to €800 with the kilo.

Weanling bulls in Skibbereen sold from €300 to €600 over the kilo, with weanling heifers selling from €300 to €560 with their weight.

Skibbereen

Friday

No Breed Sex Weight €

1 Ch steer 725kg 1570

2 Ch steers 452kg 1130

2 Hr steers 562kg 1190

4 Fr steers 508kg 1025

1 BB heifer 450kg 1065

1 Ch cow 865kg 1760

1 Lm cow 790kg 1970

I went to Bandon on Monday taking a few cattle with me.

An ‘end of season sale’ is what I’d like to call the range of cattle I had on offer last Monday.

I had some good, some bad and some downright ugly cattle, and the price I got matched my stock.

The marts at the moment are in definite wind-down mode, it’s turkey not beef that is starting to occupy the mind.

And I think it’s fair to say that most sellers will regret not having moved stock a month ago.

A month ago the money for store cattle was better, and the cattle were better.

The rain has dampened both the price and the beast.

However, having said that, 2015 should and will be looked back on as a good year for the seller. From calves to dry cows, few selling stock could have a complaint.

And speaking of dry cows, in Bandon on Monday the mart had about 100 dry cows on offer.

And with most cull cows coming straight from the parlour to the mart, the money on offer is, to my mind, good.

If a handy cull cow who has given seven or eight years of milk can still command €700 or thereabouts, then the dairy farmer really can’t have many complaints.

In Bandon on Monday dry cows sold from €150 under to €410 over their weight.

Heifers in Bandon made from €300 to €600 with the kilo.

Also in Bandon, Friesian bullocks sold from €250 to €505 with the kilo.

Aberdeen Angus and Hereford bullocks ranged in price from €400 to €600 with the kilo.

Continental bullocks made from €450 up to €620 with the kilo.

Bandon

Monday

No Breed Sex Weight €

5 Sim steers 513kg 1040

2 AA steers 467kg 965

3 Hr steers 538kg 1080

4 Fr steers 532kg 850

3 Ch steers 535kg 1010

4 AA steers 410kg 895

1 Fr cow 810kg 1250

In spite of Saturday being a day of high winds and torrential downpours, Macroom mart gallantly kept its doors open.

Business went ahead as usual with dry cows in Macroom on Saturday selling from €40 under to €460 over the kilo.

Hereford and Aberdeen Angus bullocks sold from €220 to €605 over the kilo.

Continental bullocks made from €235 to €770 over the kilo. Heifers sold from €225 to €660 over their weight.

Weanling bulls in Macroom sold from €240 to €505 over the kilo. With weanling heifers selling from €230 to €490 with their weight.

Macroom

Saturday

No Breed Sex Weight €

1 AA steer 570kg 1175

5 AA steers 450kg 1000

1 Lm steer 680kg 1450

1 Ch steer 550kg 1130

3 AA heifers 490kg 1150

1 Ch heifer 470kg 1045

1 Sim cow 820kg 1280

Next we go eastwards to Dungarvan where we talk to mart manager Ger Flynn, who gave us this report.

“The trade has steadied in recent weeks, with a lively trade for bullocks and quality heifers.”

Dungarvan

Monday

No Breed Sex Weight €

1 Ch steer 590kg 1145

3 AA steers 608kg 1135

2 Ch heifers 565g 1155

1 BB heifer 585kg 1135

2 Hr heifers 552kg 1095

1 Fr cow 660kg 870

1 AA cow 720kg 1040

The sales might be getting smaller, but prices “remain strong” according to Denis Kirby of Kilmallock mart.

Last Monday Kilmallock had 1,125 stock including 220 cows on offer.

Bullocks here on Monday made up to €2.38 per kg. Heifers made up to é2.21 per kg.

The dry cow ring had 60 buyers paying up to €1.73 per kg for cows.

Weanlings in Kilmallock on Monday hit a high of €3.19 per kg.

Dairy stock sold to €1,500 each while sucklers made up to €1,540 (a fee which was paid for a 3½-year-old Charolais and her Aberdeen bull calf).

Kilmallock mart has just two cattle sales remaining for 2015.

The last sale of the year will be held on December 21, with the mart reopening for business on January 11, 2016.

And moving away from cattle entirely, on Monday next a Christmas Market is being held in the mart grounds with over 50 stalls offering Christmas trees, fruit, vegetables, gifts, and everything else you might need for Christmas.

Kilmallock

Monday

No Breed Sex Weight €

2 AA steers 353kg 780

2 Lim steers 548kg é1180

1 BB steer 480kg 1140

4 Hr steers 505kg 1100

1 Lim heifer 470kg 1000

3 Ch heifers 483kg 990

1 Fr cow 495kg 785

And so finally for this week we go to Kanturk mart where mart manger Seamus O’Keeffe gave us the following report.

“Despite a terrible weekend of rain we had 400 animals with over 90 cows on offer. Prices were much the same as last week.

“Our last weanling show and sale took place on Tuesday and we would like to thank our sponsors John O’Donoghue and Co. Accountants Banteer and Brosnan Boylan Golden T/A Farm First Insurance.”

The Supreme Champion was a Charolais male weighing 460kg, owned by Denis Lenihan, Knocknagree, and he made €1,050.

He was bought by Tom O’Callaghan, Burnfort.

The Reserve was a Charolais female weighing 345kg also owned by Denis Lenihan Knocknagree, and she sold for €800.

This animal was purchased by Sean Shanahan, Newcastlewest.

Seamus O’Keeffe said: “Our last show for 2015 will be held on Tuesday, December 22.

Our last sale of the year, this is a show for all animals in the mart, and the sponsor on that day will be North Cork Co-Op Creameries.”

Kanturk

Tuesday

No Breed Sex Weight €

2 AA steers 600kg 1150

1 Fr steer 705kg 1100

3 BB steers 535kg 1050

1 Hr steer 565kg 1000

1 Lm heifer 585kg 1150

1 AA cow 770kg 1050

1 Lm cow 670kg 910

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