Following the Beef Shorthorn Sale at Stirling, this account gives us first hand an idea of what effort goes into buying and selling commercial prize bulls. The four bulls Upsall Shorthorns, sold were driven up from North Yorkshire on the Saturday and sold at Stirling on the Sunday.
Stockman George and Maureen McCulloch, had the bulls in great shape and sold to commercial farms, all across Scotland averaging over £6000 each.
One of our buyers, Alan MacPherson had an epic journey to attend and buy at the sale on Sunday 21st February 2021.
Leaving home on the Isle of Skye at 5am with livestock trailer in tow, he travelled via Cluanie, Spean Bridge, Dalwhinnie and the A9 South arriving at United Auctions Stirling by 11am.
His mission was to find a suitable replacement pedigree shorthorn bull, with a shortlist of two main contenders, his first choice (thanks to the Covid friendly viewing site on www.beefshorthorn.org) being lot 226 – North Easter of Upsall (P) appearing two thirds of the way through the catalogue.
A lovely coloured bull and son of Firefox of Upsall, an all white sire, he was even better looking in the flesh with great length and height for an animal of just 21 months.
The main concern was of course budget. If the bull hit five figures and went out to bidding amongst the breeders ‘tick tack’ it would be beyond our grasp.
Thankfully he came within budget and by 4pm he was safely loaded by George (McCulloch) and the journey North to the wintering in the Black Isle began. By 8.30pm our new bull had been safely ensconced with our suckler cows and the final leg of the return journey took me to Kyle of Lochalsh via Garve and Strathcarron over the Skye bridge, home to Eynort by midnight. Some thirteen and half hours driving and close to a thousand miles.
Future heifer calves from North Easter will be kept and reared to be sold on as two or three year old in calf heifers to a Limousin bull at our annual breeding sale in Dingwall each November. Our farm have been selling in calf heifers at this sale for the past sixty years.
Many thanks to Allan MacPherson of Eynort, Skye. We wish you all the best with North Easter of Upsall.
Upsall Castle Farms, Upsall, Thirsk, North Yorkshire, YO7 2QJ, UK