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Domestic sheep are one of the fastest growing, non-contagious and productive animals on the farmstead. Not surprisingly, the first breed of sheep for domestic breeding appeared many thousands of years ago. The process of selection does not stop today. If previously the greatest value was possessed by universal animals, giving their owner wool and meat, skins, milk and valuable fat, now there is an increasing preference for varieties with a clear orientation.
Depending on the climate, needs and demand, large and small farms specialize in growing:
- meat breeds of sheep;
- meat and meat-and-meat-variety varieties;
- animals that produce high-quality skin and wool.
There are breeds of sheep, breeding of which is beneficial to producers of dietary dairy products, including cottage cheese, sour-milk drinks and cheese. In the southern regions, sheep are highly valued.
Features of the breeds of sheep, their photos and descriptions will help beginner sheep breeders get acquainted with these animals and competently form their own herd.
Romanovskaya sheep breed
Originally a Russian breed of sheep, which appeared in the farms of the Yaroslavl province as far back as the 18th century. Despite the respectable for the species of domestic animals, the breed is still extremely popular and widespread.
A characteristic feature of the Romanov breed of sheep is high fertility.
Thanks to the ability of the queens to bring at once several lambs and kitten, despite the season, animals show excellent productivity in meat, although the weight of sheep and adult females is far from representatives of true meat breeds sheep.
Lambs of the Romanov breed of sheep are quickly gaining weight. Seven-month-old stock weighs about 30-35 kg. The weight of the sheep reached maturity reaches 80-100 kg, the female is half lighter. Today, this breed for home content is supported by high interest from the owners of private farms and farmsteads. In addition to the good quality of meat, the animals receive healthy milk with a fat content of about 7%.
During the lactation period, a sheep can produce up to a hundred liters of a valuable product.
Eldibaevskaya sheep breed
The ancestors of the Edilbaevskaya sheep, which were obtained back in the century before last, are Kazakh khyudy animals and large coarse-wooled sheep from the Astrakhan province. The descendants of these hardy varieties inherited the best traits of their parents and were able to survive even in the most severe steppe conditions, in an arid climate on a small number of meager stern.
Edilbaevskie sheep - a breed that tolerates heat, cold, piercing wind.
In search of new pastures, animals overcome considerable distances and at the same time manage to work up to 120 kg of weight in rams, and 75 kg in sheep. Today, this breed of sheep can be seen not only in the Kazakh steppes, but also in the southern regions of Russia, where endurance and high meat productivity of animals are also valued.
Hissar breed of sheep
Sheep fat is valuable, especially in areas of traditional sheep breeding, a product that determined the appearance of a whole variety of animal breeds. Meat or sheep sheep are still the most recognized in Asia, the Middle East, and the Caucasus. Fat in the body of animals of sheep breeds of sheep does not accumulate evenly, but only in the tail area, forming many kilogram reserves.
Hissar breed of sheep is a vivid representative of the meat and meat variety. Large animals grow up to 190 weights, and they have almost a third of the weight of a sheep's calf.
Hardy sheep, perfectly adapted to mountain pastures and transitions, enjoyed wide popularity even in the times of the USSR, and are still actively grown on private farmsteads. These animals have good immunity, and grow rapidly, but fertility does not differ. The weight of an adult sheep reaches 90, and sometimes 150 kg, the sheep are even larger. The weight of the meat carcass exceeds 140, and the sheepskin sheep - 180 kg. Sheep for a couple of months of lactation give up to 120 liters of milk.
Sheep Merino sheep
Merino is considered to be a specific standard for sheep wool. This breed of sheep was first obtained on the Iberian Peninsula. And the Spaniards are still rightfully proud of this fact, considering the sheep of the Merinos to be a national treasure. Now Australia is recognized as the world breeding center for these animals. Fine-fleeced sheep have a thick, soft wool, which after shearing and processing is used to make clothes, knitwear and fabrics of the highest quality.
Compared to sheep meat, Merinos can not be called large, but the amount of white fine wool from one individual can reach 18 kg. Today at the disposal of sheep breeders are several dozen breeds and pedigree lines obtained on the basis of Merinos or equal in quality and quantity of fine wool.
In the first half of the 20th century, the USSR itself received its own variety of Merinos sheep. The ancestors of the Soviet Merino, not inferior to the famous Spaniards and Australians, were domestic sheep from Altai, Stavropol and Chechnya, as well as representatives of the Rambouillet sheep breed. Unlike foreign Merinos, domestic animals are larger. Sheep weigh about 110 kg, and the sheep are about half lighter. This interesting breed of sheep is still of interest to sheep breeders in Russia and is used in selection work.
The French branch of Merinos is represented by a breed of Prekos sheep with fine fine wool and no less than high meat capacity. History of the breed began in the XIX century. In the last century an early ripening variety was introduced. Animals proved to be hardy, easily adaptable even to severe northern conditions. At the same time, the Prekios, in comparison with the wool-only breeds, need extensive pastures.
Adult sheep grow up to 120 kg of weight, the mass of sheep more often reaches 70 kg. Prekos sheep are more prolific than other Merino animals, they are good mothers, which is justified because of the risk of the appearance of a weakened, needy caring offspring.
Kuibyshev breed of sheep
Another domestic breed of sheep for domestic maintenance has a meat orientation, excellent early ripeness and endurance. At the same time, the Kuibyshev breed of sheep demonstrates excellent consumer characteristics of dense, non-typical smell of dietary meat.
Kuibyshev sheep are easy to recognize by their sturdy build, muscular legs, broad back and chest, dense short neck and bald head. Most of all, these sheep meat breeds resemble the famous animals Romney-march.
The weight of the ram reaches 190 kg, females weigh about 100 kg. Lambs of the Kuibyshev breed are very early in weight and catch up with their mothers even when they reach half a year.
South African sheep of the Dorper breed were obtained by local breeders for the purpose of breeding in rather severe conditions of a continent of livestock of productive meat-shearing sheep with high endurance and excellent precocity. As the basis for the work were taken animals Dorset Horn and Blackheaded Persian sheep with a directional orientation and other varieties.
Dorper did not deceive the expectations of scientists and sheep breeders. For nearly a century this breed of sheep has confirmed its ability to survive in the desert, dispense with succulent fodder and perfectly weight weight in long voyages along stony slopes.
The weight of the ram reaches 140 kg, adult females are half as small. The same weight, about 50-60 kg, is reached by semiannual lambs.
The Texel sheep breed
The Texel sheep is considered to be one of the oldest in Europe. There is even the opinion that animals with similar signs were known even during the time of Great Rome. But special attention was paid to early ripened bearded sheep in the century before last. It was at this time that individuals of Dutch origin received an infusion of new British blood, and a new standard of decent cultivation was established at private farmsteads and large farms rocks.
As a result of selection work, sheep breeders and scientists managed to obtain an ideal combination of meat production and the availability of soft quality wool in large animals.
Sheep grow up to 70 kg, the weight of adult sheep can exceed 160 kg.
Animals are early, are unpretentious and have good immunity, which is important when keeping sheep at home. Therefore today the breed of Texel sheep is chosen by thousands of owners of farmsteads all over the world and in Russia, in particular.