N & M Moilies (Nigel Edwards and Michelle Mc Cauley) represent at shows and sales cattle from the Curraghnakeely, Ballyreagh and Burren herds of pedigree Irish Moiled cattle, which are exclusively 100% pedigree Irish Moiled herds of cattle.
The Ballyreagh and Curraghnakeely herds have a combined total of approximately 50 cows plus youngstock are managed together, owned by William (father) and Nigel (son) Edwards, situated just 2 miles outside of Tempo in an upland area of Co. Fermanagh at 600 feet above sea level. The land consists of approximately one third green grass pasture, one third rush type pasture and one third heather type pasture. All the cattle are outwintered, foraging on the rougher pasture with no fodder fed, however supplementary meal or licks are given to compliment the poor-quality forage that is available in the winter months and to ensure adequate mineral intake. The lighter weight of the medium sized Irish Moiled cow means that they forage over the winter months, with minimal poaching of the land. All the cows calve down in the springtime and all the calves are weaned in autumn with the cream of the bull calf crop being retained to eventually end up as breeding bulls with the rest of the bull calf crop being steered and sold to a specialised Irish Moilie beef finisher; Billy Kelly of Pomeroy, who grows and finishes purebred Irish Moiled bullocks for the world award winning butchery, Lisdergan Meats of Fintona. All the heifer calf crop are kept as breeding stock.
Due to the way the land is divided up on the Fermanagh farm, five stock bulls are needed to cover all the different batches of cows with calves at foot and maiden heifers at the one time. The fact that 5 stock bulls are needed allows for the unique opportunity to pick and choose certain females in the herd for a certain bull, depending on the trait needing improved the most or possibly to try and excel certain traits.
The Burren pedigree Irish Moiled herd is based at the small holdings based in Ballynahinch, Co. Down and at Dungannon, Co. Tyrone. These are usually cattle that will be destined for the show ring or for sales. The cattle at Ballynahinch are wintered out as the land is hard and no matter how wet or bad the weather, it never gets churned up and has an abundance of shelter.
At the Dungannon holding is where the cattle are halter broken that are handpicked from the Fermanagh herds for showing or for sales. Having the convenience of sheds and lighting during the winter months makes the job of bringing on cattle so much easier. When selecting an animal to halter break, emphasis is always put on quality, breed character and correctness. We take great pride in the animals selected and they are always animals that we would want to keep in the herd, we know how good they are and the breeding behind them, but unfortunately, they cannot be all kept.
We have selected three females which have exceptional breed qualities, they are all noticeably quiet and halter broke. We have also two exciting bulls entered, one bred by Christopher and Helen Kelly out their impressive stock bull Woodbine Arthur, Derrynagarragh Galahad who has taken his shape and style from his sire Woodbine Arthur, the other young bull Gypsy King is the best-bred animal that we have ever produced, let alone sold, he has it everyway his looks, confirmation, temperament, growth rates.
All five will be for sale through the Magnificent Moilies Spring Sale being held from Thurs 6th May to Sat 8th May by Harrison & Hetherington’s online timed auction. Full details available on the IMCS website and facebook page.