Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

Cashing in

link Staff photo: Tony Bullocks

J’Lea Fuqua of Clovis awaits her chance to auction off her first-place heifer, Lilly, on Friday at livestock auction. It was Fuqua’s second year in a row taking first place and her fourth year showing heifers.

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Lynnae Allen, 17, has spent much of her life raising dairy heifers; but it was her piggy bank that prevailed during the Junior Livestock Sale on Friday evening at the Curry County Events Center.

Allen sold her reserve grand champion dairy heifer for $7,250 — the most she’s ever gotten from a sale, she said.

“I’m very blessed,” said the Melrose native with a smile. She said she’s been selling livestock since she was 9.

Allen said the funds will go toward what she paid to purchase the unnamed dairy heifer and the cost of caring for her.

The $2,400 that 19-year-old Mitchell Pinnell of Texico got for his market lamb will be wisely invested.

Due to his age, this is the last year that Pinnell, a recent Texico High School graduate, can compete with and sell livestock in the Curry County Fair. Part of what he earned Friday will be given to his 15-year-old sister, Micah, so that she may purchase livestock and continue the family tradition of raising market lambs.

Pinnell will also invest in his college education. He said he will be moving to Las Cruces next week, where he plans to attend New Mexico State University and pursue a degree in ag education.

Pinnell’s older sister, Morgan, 21, also raised, showed and sold market lambs before she reached the limit age of 19.

“Raising animals and showing at the fair has always done me and my family a lot of good,” said Pinnell, who is also a state officer for Future Farmers of America.

Through the FFA officer program. Pinnell helps promote agriculture and leadership in area schools.

He said raising livestock has taught him and his siblings responsibility — a trait that Lane Grau of Grady also said is sharpened through the care of livestock.

Grau’s daughter, Kristin, 11, sold a market heifer named Laci for $3,400.

Kristin Grau has raised steers for the past two years, her father said, and she began raising heifers last year.

“It’s a lot of hard work,” Lane Grau said of raising livestock. “But, it’s really rewarding if you can get into the livestock sales.”

Aside from teaching children responsibility and dependability, Grau said raising livestock is good for animals, and good for people’s relationship with them.

“You learn to be in tune with the animals,” he said.

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