Valachian
Valachian
Image courtesy of
EAAP-Animal Genetic Bank

Valais Blacknose
Valais Blacknose
Image to courtesy of
EAAP-Animal Genetic Bank

Van Rooy lambs
Van Rooy lambs

Images courtesy of Genelink

Van Rooy ewes
Van Rooy ewes

Vlaams schaap

Vlaams schaap ewes

Images courtesy of Frank De Smedt and
Vlaamse hobbyfokkers van geiten en schapen


Vlaams schaap

Vendéen  ram
Vendéen ram

Vendéen  sheep
Vendéen sheep

Voskop sheep
Voskop sheep

Voskop sheep
Voskop sheep

Welsh Mountain
Welsh Mountain

Welsh Mule
Welsh Mule ewes

Wensleydales
Wensleydale
Image courtesy of DE RIETHOECK

West African
West African

Whiteface Woodland
Whiteface Woodland
Image courtesy of
EAAP-Animal Genetic Bank

White-face Dartmoor
Whiteface Dartmoor
Image source: Hedgelink

Whiteface Dartmoor sheep
Whiteface Dartmoor sheep
Image source: Hedgelink

White Horned Heath
White Horned Heath
Image courtesy of
EAAP-Animal Genetic Bank

White Mountain
German White Mountain ram

Images courtesy of
EAAP-Animal Genetic Bank

White Mountain sheep
White Mountain sheep

White Polled Heath
White Polled Heath
Image courtesy of
EAAP-Animal Genetic Bank

White Suffolk rams
White Suffolk rams
Image courtesy of Australian
White Suffolk Association


Wiltipoll rams
Wiltipoll rams
Image courtesy of Australian
Wiltipoll Association, Inc.


Wiltshire Horn ram

Images courtesy of
Pickwick Stud of Australia



Wiltshire Horn ewe


Wrzosówka ram
Wrzosówka ram
Image source: Sheep Breeds in Poland


Xinjiang Fine Wool
Image source: ConSDABI

Zwartbles sheep
Zwartbles ewes
Image courtesy of
Zwartbles Sheep Association

 

 

    Sheep Breeds V - Z

  • Valachian
    (Walachenschaf)

    The Valachian is a highly endangered landrace sheep. Presently, the only breeding done in Germany is strictly for preservation and only animals that show malformations are not bred on. The Valachian is dual-coated with coarse, mostly white wool that reaches the ground; gray and black are rare.

    Rams often have Roman noses and look imposing with their spiraling horns of up to one meter, that stick out sideways. Ewes sometimes have corkscrew-like, fine horns.The breed is extremely shy, high-spirited, alert, and loyal to its territory, nearly exhibiting the character of a wild animal. It is remarkably hardy and frugal and can withstand extreme cold, high precipitation, as well as drought.

    Breed category: landrace, rare, double-coated

    Distribution: Europe


    Go to Gesellschaft zur Erhaltung alter und gefährdeter Haustierrassen e.V. (GEH) =>






  • Valais Blacknose
    (Walliser Schwarznasenschaf)

    The Valais Blacknose is a coarsewooled (i.e. mattress, mixed or carpet) breed from Switzerland, kept primarily for meat. In Germany, they call it the Walliser Schwarznasenschaf


    Breed categories: Carpet wool, meat

    Distribution: Switzerland, Germany




  • Van Rooy

    In 1906, Senator J. C. van Rooy, of the farm Koppieskraal in the Bethulie district, started his experiments to propagate a breed of sheep for slaughter lamb production: The requirements he set for this breed, were threefold: 1) The breed had to be strong and hardy to cope with regular droughts; 2) It had to be fertile in order to maintain a high percentage of production; It had to have an excellent conformation.

    With these aims in mind he made use of a white "Blinkhaar Afrikaner" ram and eighty Rambouillet ewes. With the progeny of these the principle of inbreeding, coupled with severe selection, was applied. Later on, a polled Wensleydale ram was introduced in an effort to improve conformation. The present day Van Rooy sheep is still run mostly in the arid areas where survival and reproduction on natural grazing are essential for the economic production of meat.

    Breed categories: hair (meat), fat-tailed

    Distribution: South Africa, Australia


    Go to Van Rooy Sheep Breeders Association =>




  • Vlaams schaap
    (Flemish Sheep)

    The Vlaams schaap originated in Belgium during the late middle ages. It is sometimes confused with the Belgium Milk Sheep. After the Second World War all native milk sheep were amalgamated to the Belgian milk sheep and the Flemish sheep almost entirely disappeared. In the Netherlands, the Flemish sheep was used in the development of the Swifter. They are a large breed, milky and fertile. They can easily raise three lambs. Their white wool is long and curly at the ends.

    Breed category: multi-purpose, rare

    Distribution: Europe




  • Vendéen

    The Vendéen were developed near Vendée in western France. The breed was developed using Southdown rams, imported during the late nineteenth century, on local ewes. The breed is noted for the production of high quality lamb carcasses. Their face and legs are covered with dark brown to gray hair. Both sexes are polled. Comparisons in performance between the Vendéen and the Texel showed the Vendéen having larger litter size, older at sexual maturity, and a longer lambing interval. The two breeds are relatively equal in muscularity. The Vendéen exhibited a lower wool yield, daily gain, carcass leanness, and milk yield.

    Breed category: meat, medium wool

    Distribution: United Kingdom, Europe


    Go to Vendéen Sheep Society Ltd. =>




  • Voskop
    (Ardense Voskop)

    The Voskop (Fox Head) descends from ardense sheep which were brought to the better Flemish meadows for fattening. They are a sheep of average size. Rams weigh between 70 and 80 kg (154-176 lbs.); ewes between 55 and 70 kg (121-154 lbs.). Ewes wean on average 1.7 lambs. Their wool is pale brown without spotting. They are a hardy sheep, able to withstand both dryness and dampness and cold. They produce meat of excellent quality and taste.

    Breed category: meat, rare

    Distribution: Europe



  • Welsh Mountain

    The Welsh Mountain breed has survived for centuries in the harsh environment of its natural habitat, where high rainfall and freezing winter temperatures make it impossible for anything other than the hardiest and fittest to survive. The breed was developed to survive in such a harsh environment and breeders gave the highest priority to factors such as hardiness, milkiness, mothering ability, and lamb survival.

    Welsh lamb's pre-eminance for quality and taste was built upon lamb from the Welsh Mountain breed. The inherent characteristics of the Welsh Mountain sheep are transmitted to its crosses: Welsh Half-bred, Welsh Mules, and Welsh Bleus.

    Breed category: hill, longwool

    Distribution: United Kingdom





  • Welsh Mule

    The Welsh Mule is the progeny of registered Bluefaced Leicester rams crossed with ewes of one of three hardy hill breeds from Mid and North Wales -- the Welsh Mountain, Welsh Hill Speckled Face and Bealah -- all having the reputation for being healthy, hardy, good foragers with exceptional mothering qualities.

    The Welsh Mule hybrid was developed inthe 1970's to satisfy the demand from prime lamb producers for a prolific ewe with good growth potential, good milking capacity, and when crossed with modern breeds of meat sires, the ability to produce prime quality, long lean-finished lambs. Facial coloration varies from white to a dark mottled or speckeled, depending upon breeding.

    Breed category: half-breed

    Distribution: United Kingdom




  • Wensleydale

    The Wensleydale is a large longwool sheep with a distinctive deep blue head, ears and legs. The breed originated in North Yorkshire, England during the 19th century and was developed primarily to provide rams for crossing onto the hill ewe. The breed's greatest attribute is the quality and quantity of curly wool each sheep produces.

    Wool from the Wensleydale is acknowledged as the finest lustre long wool in the world. The fleece from a purebred sheep is considered kemp free. The breed is widespread throughout the United Kingdom, with some small flocks in Holland, France, and Denmark. A "breeding up" program is developing in the USA, using Wensleydale ram sperm in English Leicester, Lincoln, and Cotswold ewes and their female progeny.

    Breed categories: long wool, dual-purpose

    Distribution: United Kingdom, Europe, North America


    Go to North American Wensleydale Sheep Association =>
    Go to Wensleydale Longwool Sheep Breeders' Association =>






  • West African
    (Red African, Rojo Africaa, Africana)

    The West African is found in Colombia, Venezuela, and the Caribbean. They are usually brown, ranging in shade from tan to brown and cherry-red to dark red. They are very similar to the Pelibüey in size and confirmation. The breed is polled and the male is sometimes maned.

    Breed categories: hair (meat)

    Distribution: Caribbean, South America





  • Whiteface Dartmoor

    There have been Whitefaced Dartmoors on the Moor since they earliest records. They are also found on parts of Exmoor. The ewes are renowned for crossing to produce a halfbred ewe capable of producing a prime lamb when put to a terminal sire ram. The Whitefaced Dartmoor is very hardy and can thrive on the very poorest pasture. They were always horned, but this feature has tended to disappear over the years. The wool is white, of good staple, and with a fairly strong crimp.

    Breed categories: coarse wool

    Distribution: United Kingdom


    Go to Whiteface Dartmoor Sheep Association =>





  • Whiteface Woodland

    The Whitefaced Woodland originated in the South Pennines of England. It is also known as Penistone after the Yorkshire town where sheep sales have been held since 1699. It is thought to be closely related to the Swaledale and the Lonk. One of the larger of the English hill breeds, the breed has no wool free, white, face and legs. Both sexes are horned and the horns in the males are heavily spiraled.

    Breed categories: medium wool, meat, hill

    Distribution: United Kingdom


    Go to Whiteface Woodland Sheep Society =>




  • White Horned Heath
    (Weiße Gehörnte Heidschnucke)

    The White Horned Heath originated from the Grey Horned Heath Sheep and was first developed as a separate breed at the beginning of the 20th century. Originally herds consisted of both horned and polled animals. A few years later they were divided into two breeds, the polled called White Polled Heath or Moorschnucke.

    Since 1949, the White Horned Heath has been recognized as a new race. The origin is in the heath areas in northern Germany. It is a small landrace breed which can be used to preserve heath and moor areas. It's always pure white, both sexes are horned, the meat is of very high quality and tastes like venison.

    Breed category: landrace, rare, double-coated

    Distribution: Europe




  • White Mountain
    (Weißes Bergschaf)

    The German Mountain breed is found in the Bavarian Alps and Pre-alps of southern Germany. The breed was developed by grading local breeds to Bergamasca and Tyrol Mountain. It is a coarse to medium wooled breed and is polled.

    Breed category: dual-purpose, coarse wool

    Distribution: Europe





  • White Polled Heath
    (Moorschnucke, Weiße gehörnte Heidschnucke)

    The origin of the hardy and frugal breed is northern German counties of Diepholz, Nienburg, Rotenburg. The White Polled Heath is a white, dual-coated, graceful landrace with a small frame. The slender head has small ears that stick out to the side. Both sexes are hornless and have light-colored, hard hoofs. They mature slowly.

    The decline of this heath-sheep breed started when it did not pay anymore to take the flocks grazing on the moors. It took the involvement of nature protectors and breeders to save the breed from extinction.

    Breed category: landrace, rare, double-coated

    Distribution: Europe




  • White Suffolk

    Beginning in 1977, Dr. Ewan Roberts of the University of New South Wales in Australia started a breeding program to develop a terminal sire breed of sheep. His goals were to have a breed with the confirmation, structure, and growth of the Suffolk, but with a white head and legs. The initial cross was between Suffolk and Polled Dorset and separately Suffolk crossed with Border Leicester. The F2 and subsequent generations were selected against black points and for increased gain.

    The White Suffolk has similar features to the Suffolk, however, instead of dark points the White Suffolk has a white face and legs.

    Breed categories: medium wool, meat

    Distribution: Australia, New Zealand


    Go to Australian White Suffolk Association =>







  • Wiltipoll

    The Wiltipoll is a new breed of sheep, recently developed in Australia from the Wiltshire Horn. It is a polled sheep that is bred for the production of prime lamb only. Its short white fleece is shed annually, from Spring to Summer, where it falls to the ground and is of no commercial value.The absence of horns has been achieved by the infusion of blood from the Border Leicester, Poll Dorset, and Polled Merino breeds.

    Wiltipoll/Merino cross lambs, off grass at 10 months of age, regularly reach weights of 25 to 30 kgs dressed, without developing fat, as do other British Breed lambs.

    Breed categories: hair (meat)

    Distribution: Australia


    Go to Australian Wiltipoll Association, Inc. =>




  • Wiltshire Horn

    The Wiltshire Horn is an ancient British breed from the Chalk Downs region of England. Reaching large numbers during the 17th and 18th centuries, they became almost extinct by the beginning of the 20th. They are currently attracting attention for their lack of wool and the need for shearing, as well as their ability to pass on their vitality and quality meat in a cross-breeding program. Both rams and ewes are horned. The Wiltshire Horn is classified as a "rare" breed by the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy.

    Breed category: hair (meat)

    Distribution: Worldwide


    Go to Wiltshire Horn Sheep Society =>
    Go to Australian Wiltshire Horn Sheep Breeders' Association =>




  • Wrzosówka
    (Polish Heath)

    The Wrzosówka belongs to the Northern type of short-tailed sheep which have been kept for centuries in different regions of Europe, including Northeastern parts of Poland. It is unique among Polish sheep breeds, since it is extremely adaptable to difficult conditions, disease-resistant, and prolific. It is able to reproduce all year round.

    The Wrzosówka is rather thin and small, proportionally built. The fleece is usually consists of two layers: down and medulated hair. Its skins are usued for fur coat production. Ewes are usually polled, while rams have widely set black horns. The Wrzosówka is the only surviving primitive sheep breed in Poland. A conservation program was started in 1981.

    Breed categories: primitive, rare, short-tailed, fur

    Distribution: Poland





  • Xinjiang Fine Wool (pronounce as "Shin-Jang"
    (Xinjiang Merino)

    The Xinjiang Finewool was among the first of the Chinese breeds and it has played a part in the establishment of some other breeds. The original crosses were between Russian Merino rams, probably of the Caucasian, Precoce, and Stravrapol types, with local breeds of ewe. The most important of these breeds was the Kazakh, but some Mongolian ewes were also used.

    There followed a program of backcrossing to the Merino parent, with some interbreeding and selection. Australian rams were used to a limited extend during the 1970s in the development of the Xinjiang breed. The Xinjiang Finewool is a dual-purpose sheep with emphasis placed on wool production and body weight.

    Breed categories: fine-wool, dual-purpose

    Distribution: China




  • Zwartbles

    Since the beginning of the last century, dairy farmers in the Freisland region of Holland have kept Zwartbles Sheep, a strikingly handsome black sheep with a distinctive white blaze and 2 to 4 white "socks." Freisland lies in the North of Holland, and these beautiful and elegant sheep serve as dual purpose animals - meat and milk. Due to changes in farming practices, numbers of Zwartbles in Holland became severely reduced until the breed was adopted by the Dutch Rare Breed Survival trust in the mid-1970s.

    In the last few years, a small number of Zwartbles sheep have been imported by enthusiasts to Great Britain. There are now 147 registered Zwartbles flocks (a total of about 3,500 sheep) spread throughout the UK, and they are well able to cope with the lowland and mid-altitude conditions in England, Wales, and Scotland.

    Breed categories: rare, dual purpose (meat and milk)

    Distribution: United Kingdom, Europe


    Go to Zwartbles Sheep Association =>
    Go to Nederlands Zwartbles Schapenstamboek =>



Last updated 14-Jan-2010
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