Peter Baul sparkles again at Craven Dairy Auction Peter Baul’s Ravensgate pedigree Holstein herd bagged its second Craven Dairy Auction championship of the year at the opening February show at Skipton Auction Mart. (Mon, Feb 8) Mr Baul, who trades as M Baul & Partners at Watergate Farm, Bishop Thornton, was Skipton’s opening 2016 dairy show title winner and reserve champion at the second show, also landing a hat-trick of championships and other top price successes in 2015.

He returned to the victor’s podium at the third show of the current year with his first prize newly calven heifer, Ravensgate Aldean Sparkle 223, the latest in a long and milk-rich family line, and the first he has produced by the young Cogent bull, Aldean. Out of Ravensgate Principal Sparkle, 32 days-calved and giving 32 litres, the champion sold for top call of £1,660 to Andrew Parker, of Emley, Huddersfield.

Reserve champion was the first prize newly calven cow from David Fort, of High Malsis Farm, Glusburn, who was returning to the dairy ring at Skipton for the first time in many years. He currently keeps 90 commercial Holstein Friesian cattle, 50 of which are in milk. His second calver, nine days-calved and giving 33 litres, sold for £1,450 to local buyer John Howard, of Heslaker.

The second prize newly calven heifer, a pedigree from Thimbleby Farms, Northallerton, became a second Andrew Parker purchase at £1,250, while the third in class, a commercial entry from Laycock’s Sammy Sugden, sold for £1,000 to Martyn Jennings, of Cowling.

Also to the fore was Bingley’s Keith Downs with a newly calven commercial heifer that made £1,350 on joining Mark Goodall in Tong, Bradford, while Brian and Susan Barningham, from Isaac Oliver and Partners in Darley, again dominated the in-calf heifer show class, taking first and second prizes with a brace of entries that sold to £860.

Four bulling heifers from Bolton Abbey’s David and Jill Pennock sold to £660, averaging £615, while a five-week-old Friesian heifer calf from Chris Watson, of Horton-in-Craven, made £220.

Potential buyers for the small entry of 16 head were understandably cautious, as newly calven heifers averaged £1,244. Show judge was Thornton-in-Craven’s Dave Berry and sponsors NMR and VG Energy.

Calf trade improves
On a more positive note, a strong show of 91 rearing calves – the average age was 37 days - at Monday’s weekly sale met with a better trade than seen of late, especially for the better end of the black and white youngsters on parade, which topped at £175 for a bull calf from RD Guy, of Earby, and averaged £73.13 per head overall.

Continentals were a straight trade, with Fred Houseman, of Church Farm Enterprises in Burton Leonard, once again leading the way with a British Blue-cross bull calf at £380, closely followed at £370 with a same way bred entry from Sutton-in-Craven’s Richard Spence. The section average was £303.30 per head.

Native youngsters topped at £275 for an Aberdeen Angus heifer calf from Andrew Smith, of Carleton, with Chris Watson, of Horton-in-Craven, chipping in with a £250 Hereford bull calf. Natives averaged £174.50 overall.