The Babydoll Southdown sheep are great small livestock if you’re looking to harvest cashmere-like fleece, run a breeding operation, or have the cutest sheep around. They grow to be about 18-24 inches in height and 70-120 lbs in weight. One acre of land can sustain five Babydoll sheep and they are popular as “organic weeders”. Their fleece is also fine, soft, very elastic and has more barbs per inch than other wool types. These sheep are good mothers and have a strong flocking instinct. As a result if you’re looking for friendly sheep that are low-maintenance and require less land and fewer resources, Babydoll sheep may be the breed for you.
Ewes and rams are both polled (no horns) and are very docile by nature. The ewes are good mothers, and can often raise twins and triplets with ease. Because the “Olde English Babydoll” Southdowns are one of the ancient breeds, they are not prone to very many of the modern sheep problems and are resistant to foot rot.
We secured our original Babydoll Southdown flock of 16 sheep from a wonderful, knowledgeable shepherd named Kristin in Colorado. Buying a flock from Colorado provided us the ability to bring new genetics into Texas. As we are serious about keeping inbreeding low and maintaining our unique set of genetics.
At Black Sheep meadows we only breed with RR rams (Codon 171) to Scrapie-Proof our flock. As a result all our lambs are QR/RR meaning that they are resistant to Scrapie.
Natural colored Bluefaced Leicesters can range from almost solid to dark animals with patterning on the face, legs, saddle, and other areas. Bluefaced Leicester sheep is classified as a longwool breed with a staple length of 3-6 inches, and a fiber diameter of 56s–60s count, or 24-28 microns. It creates high-quality semi-lustre yarns with soft hand, beautiful drape, and excellent dyeing properties. Adult Bluefaced Leicester has one of the largest body weights and the most prolific of all the native British breeds.
Gotland sheep are a popular breed worldwide but were newly introduced (2003) to North America through a upbreeding program using imported semen. The program cross non-Gotland foundation ewes with Gotland genetics through AI or natural breeding to increase the Gotland percentage.
Gotland sheep originate from the island of Gotland, located off the coast of Sweden. Their bloodlines date back to Viking times but they were only introduced to North America in 2003, through an upbreeding program using artificial insemination. They are truly a triple-purpose breed providing flavorful meat and sought-after wool and pelt. Gotland sheep are a great choice for both large commercial flocks as well as small family farms.
GOTLAND SHEEP FACTS
Appearance: Medium sized, grey coloring with outward extending ears. Naturally hornless & short tailed. Rams range from 165 – 190lbs. Ewes range from 120 – 155lbs.
Wool: One of the most lustrous & silky curly fibers, ranging from silver grey to black. Favorite among hand-spinners, felters, and other fiber artists. Not prone to wool discoloration due to sun exposure.
Lambing: Calm and friendly manner, combined with a high lambing rate. Ewes produce abundant milk and have strong mothering instincts. · Meat: Lambs reach ideal slaughter at 5-7 months of age. Meat is mild, good flavored and close-grained.
For more breed information, please go to any of the two Gotland registries in the USA · GSBANA – http://gsbana.org · AGSS – www.americangotlandsheep.org