Lisglass Kirk has set what is understood to be a new Simmental breed record of £25,000 for a bull bred in Northern Ireland.
The five-figure sum is a “dream come true” for county Antrim-based Simmental breeders, Leslie and Christopher Weatherup.
The record-breaking bull is Lisglass Kirk, a twenty-month-old son of the NI-bred, Mullyknock Gallant.
His dam is the 2017 Balmoral Show champion, Lisglass Goddess GP83, a daughter of the herd’s successful stock bull, Dermotstown Del boy, Balmoral supremo in 2014 and 2015.
Furthermore, the breeders have previously sold bulls to a top of 10,000gns at Stirling and females for a herd best of 6,600gns.
‘One of the most outstanding bull we have ever bred’
Christopher Weatherup explained: “This bull stood out from the moment he was born and is one of the most outstanding bulls we have ever bred.”
“He is extremely correct and has tremendous length, power and muscle, coupled with style and breed character. We firmly believe he has a big future within the Simmental breed.”
Last year, Liglass Kirk came sixth in the autumn bull calf class during the British Simmental Cattle Society’s Virtual Show.
The power of social media
Christopher continued: “We had planned to sell Lisglass Kirk at Stirling in February, but circumstances beyond our control, which included the nonsensical animal movement restrictions outlined by post-Brexit NI Protocol, meant we couldn’t take him to the society’s national showcase event in Scotland. We were extremely frustrated and disappointed.”
The Weatherup family attribute the record-breaking deal to the power of social media. “Until now, I had not fully appreciated the power of social media. My wife Laura took videos. We posted photographs and details of four Simmental bulls on Facebook for sale,” explained Christopher.
As a result, they sold all bulls to an average of £9,500, with two acquired by pedigree herds.
Christopher added: “Lisglass Kirk attracted unprecedented interest. My phone was ringing continuously. There were a number of pedigree breeders from mainland UK expressing strong interest in him.”
Closing the deal were 600-cow farmers, Philip Simmers and sons, Andrew, and Reece, from Backmuir Farm based in Keith, Banffshire.