HERE ARE A FEW POPULAR SHEEP BREEDS FROM THE UK.
EAST FRIESIAN SHEEP
The East Friesian is a large framed sheep with ewe weighing between 85 to 95 kilograms and rams weighing up to 100 – 125 kilograms. They have pink noses and head and legs are clear of wool. It is the most milk productive sheep in the world.
A Welsh mountain breed with close wool. Originating from a small area in Wales – Tywi Valley, the Balwen is distinguished by its white blaze, socks and white tail on an otherwise dark chocolate / black fleece.
The merino is the most numerous breed of sheep in the world. It is a breed prized for its very soft wool. There are 2 varieties:
- Poll – having no horns
- Horned – having long, spiral horns which grow close to the head.
Merinos are excellent grazers and very adaptable.
ENGLISH LEICESTER SHEEP
English Leicester sheep date back to the 1700’s and were found in the Midland Counties of England. It has a wedge shaped face covered in white hairs and sometimes having a blue tint. Their wool is dense but very shiny.
Cotswold sheep are a breed of sheep originating in the Cotswold hills of the southern midlands of England. It descended from sheep introduced to these hills by the Romans. In the Middle Ages this area was a thriving and profitable wool industry.
GREYFACE DARTMOOR SHEEP
The Greyface Dartmoor is a descendant of sheep that grazed on the exposed uplands of Dartmoor, in the south west of the UK, in the 17th and 18th centuries. Bred for wool, its fleece is long and coarse and used for carpets and blankets.
LINCOLN LONGWOOL SHEEP
The Lincoln is a breed of sheep from England that has been significantly altered by selective breeding in the later part of the eighteenth century. Cross-Breeding with Leicesters improved the breed’s meat production qualities.
The Shropshire breed of sheep originated from the hills of Shropshire, England during the 1840’s. A medium sized sheep that produces good wool and meat. Its gentle nature and medium size makes it very popular.