Record price for ram

A PEDIGREE Laois sheep sold for a record €108,000 at a livestock auction in Scotland, recently.

A PEDIGREE Laois sheep sold for a record €108,000 at a livestock auction in Scotland, recently.

But the former chairman of the IFA National Sheep Committee has warned that this record price has no grouding in commercial sheep farming.

“It’s marvellous to see such a big price, but we most remember that most farmers would consider €100 a big price for a sheep,” Henry Burns said.

The pedigree Suffolk sheep from the Beechill Farm in Mountrath was bred on behalf of local property developer, Dan Tynan. It was an remarkable entry into pedigree sales for Mr Tynan, as he only started his flock last year.

His prized ram sparked a bidding war at the auction, which bidders had flocked to - such was the interst in his pedigree. The winning bid was placed by a pedigree breeder Myfyr Evans from Denbeigh, North Wales.

Mr Evans first spotted the ram on a daytrip to Ireland a few weeks ago. When nothing took his fancy at an agricultural show in Kilkenny, he visited Mr Tynans farm, where it was love at first for Mr Evans and the ram.

The sale smashed the previous record for a suffolk sheep of €86,000 which was set in 1998. However, the Mountrath lamb fell short of the world record price for a sheep of almost €265,000, set two years ago.

Similar to racehorses, pedigree rams are valued for the genes that they pass onto their offspring.

Mr Burns said Dan Tynan had obviously put in huge investment and his investment had paid off at the auction.

“The pedigree sheep is a different business and its important that farmers continue to breed sheep that are relevant to the commercial sheep farming industry.”