Cheviot sheep

Cheviot sheep

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Cheviot sheep

The Cheviot sheep is a breed of white-faced sheep which gets its name from a range of hills in north Northumberland and the Scottish Borders. It is still common in this area of the United Kingdom, but also in north west Scotland, Wales, Ireland and the south west of England (especially Dartmoor and Exmoor), as well as more rarely in Australia, New Zealand, Norway , and the United States. The Cheviot is a dual-purpose breed, being raised primarily for its wool and meat.

Distinctive Appearance

The modern American Cheviot sheep is primarily a mutton sheep.  As sheep weights go, it is definitely one of the smaller breeds but one of the most distinctive in appearance.  Much of its distinctive appearance is due to the high carriage of the head and the quick, coordinated stride.  The head is carried high, and the ears are carried together, erect and forward.

There is no wool on the head or face in front of the ears, nor is there wool below the knees and the hocks.  The head, legs, and ears are covered with very fine white hair.  Their bare heads, attractive white color and absence of horns give them a very aristocratic bearing.  Nostrils and hooves should be black in color.  Rams in good condition mature at 160 to 200 lbs., ewes from 130 to 170 lbs.

Classification

  • Breed Name: Cheviot sheep
  • Other Names: None
  • Breed Purpose: Dual-purpose (meat and wool)
  • Breed Size: Large
  • Weight: Mature ram’s live body weight is between 72 and 90 kg, and the mature ewe’s average live body weight vary from 55 to 72 kg
  • Horns: No
  • Climate Tolerance: Native climates
  • Color: Generally white
  • Rarity: Common
  • Country/Place of Origin: United Kingdom

History

Cheviot EwesThe Cheviot Hills, from which this breed of sheep gets its name, and where its improvement has been so long and carefully studied, form the Border line between England and Scotland. From the date of Bannockburn, or earlier, to that of the Union, there is no reliable information further than that sheep were in 1372 “a small, but very hardy race over large tracts of the Cheviot Hills”

Breed

The Cheviot originated in the Cheviot Hills, on the border of England and Scotland. Recognised as a hardy sheep as early as 1372, Cheviots did well in those bleak, windswept conditions, with their strong constitution, easy lambing, well developed mothering instinct, and fast maturity. The Cheviot ewe can be found grazing up to 3,000 feet and is expected to live off the hill throughout the year.

Characteristics

The Cheviot sheep are large sized animals. They have a distinctive white-face, and their head and legs are wool free. They have picked ears, black muzzle and black feet. they are mainly white in color, and their wool is long. Both rams and ewes are generally polled.

As a large animal, average live body weight of the mature Cheviot rams is between 72 and 90 kg. And the mature ewe’s average live body weight vary from 55 to 72 kg.

Cheviot sheep images

Cheviot sheep

Cheviot sheep

Cheviot sheep

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