Aireburn herd bags another Craven Dairy Auction title Local husband and wife dairy farmers, Brian and Judith Moorhouse, who run the Aireburn pedigree Holstein Friesian herd at Hesper Farm, Bell Busk, picked up their first Craven Dairy Auction championship of 2019 at the year’s second fortnightly show and sale at Skipton Auction Mart. (Monday, Jan 28)

The family added to a long list of past title wins with their 21 days-calved 29-litre heifer, Aireburn Grafeeti Dilys, by the Worldwide Sires’ dairy bull, Ladys-Manor Rd Grafeeti, out of Aireburn Shamrock Dilys. Boasting five generations of VG or EX, the victor sold for £1,800 to ringside regular Brian Blezard, of Ribchester.
Standing reserve champions with a14 days-calved heifer by Go Farm–Zeber were father and son commercial dairy farmers, Duncan and Gary Robinson, of Low Birks Farm, Eldroth. Giving 30 litres, the runner-up made a price-topping £1,850.
Malhamdale’s Robert Crisp, of Nelson Farm, Calton, champion at the opening dairy show of the year two weeks earlier, picked up another rosette with a newly calven cow knocked down for £1,720.
While there was only a small turnout of dairy cattle a very busy ringside produced a healthy trade for all the entries, a point to note for potential future dairy vendors. Newly calven heifers averaged £1,825, while an in-calf heifer from Duncan Holme, of Storiths, sold for £1,200 to the Shuttleworth family in Rylstone. Show judge was Ian Collins, of Huddersfield.
Robust rearing calf entry
While a much increased turnout of 87dairy-bred rearing calves at Skipton Auction Mart’s weekly Monday sale saw quality calves in relative short supply trade was spritely, with some healthy competition across all classes.
The best end were again able to command strong prices, selling to a day’s high of £430 for a British Blue-cross bull calf from Alan Middleton, who trades as JP&KE Hartley in Beamsley. This was purchased by Tom Watson, of Sawley, Ripon.
Plenty of good, straight bulls sold in the £350-£390 bracket and while heifer calves were not quite as strong on price as previous weeks trade was still respectable, with Ralph Guy, of Earby, and Fred Longster, from Fellbeck, selling Continental-cross entries nicely into the £300s, the former topping the section with a £335 Blue-cross. The overall Continental-cross selling average was £245 per head.
Of the native youngsters, Aberdeen-Angus bulls once more met a solid trade, with the Hartley family again to the fore with a top-notch trio sold for £330 and £300 twice. Angus heifer calves proved harder to place, with the Lothersdale-based Lee family topping at £140. The overall native average was £182.
With some stronger calves forward, black and whites were slightly dearer on the week, peaking at £120 for a bull from Richard Spence, of Sutton-In-Craven, with a section average of £50.59.