Archive for the ‘Livestock’ Category

Black Welsh Mountain Sheep

A medium sized hardy breed, able to survive in the bleak Welsh mountains. The mountain fodder is frequently poor and sparse. Agile and self-sufficient, they do not suffer from foot rot to the same extent that lowland breeds do. Similarly, they are mostly immune to fly strike.

The ram is heavier than the Ewes, with horns that spiral out from the head. Ewes are not horned. The coat is a dense fine wool that can be spun, or used in felt and carpets. Normally black; the wool can develop a reddish tinge under a strong sun. There is a ‘badger variant’ that has white areas, particularly on the head, but also the legs and tail. The meat is of fine texture and taste.

Currently, we have Burlington Bertie no 2 our head ram, three younger rams and 40 ewes.

Soay Sheep

Soay – the Norse word for sheep – are a small and ancient breed. They are believed to be the ancestor of the domestic breeds. In modern times, the only natural population is on the Isle of Soay, in the Outer Hebrides, where they have run wild for centuries. Agile and quick-footed, they often ‘hop jump’, as they skittishly run from danger. They cannot be driven in a conventional manner due to their unpredictable nature.

They have a slight build and are much smaller than domestic sheep. Both sexes are horned, the male’s horns are much heavier, and may form a complete circle. The coat is often shaggy to look at, as it is self- shedding. It is normally a dull brown or tawny colour, although it can range to black.

Being a primitive bred, their tails do not need docking. They do not suffer from foot root. Soay can live happily on relatively small amounts of poor grazing, scrub, and weeds. Their flesh particularly lean for a sheep, and a gourmet treat.

Currently, we have 10 rams and 15 ewes. First Lamb born 20th February 2008 a little girl.A Breeding programme going very well. March 2010 Interesting that Lambs born so far are all Female, we are really pleased as this helps the breeding programme.

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