Whitefaced Woodland

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Whitefaced Woodland

The Whitefaced Woodland is a sheep breed from the Woodlands of Hope an area in the South Pennines in England. It is a combination of two breeds, the Woodland and the Penistone sheep 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. Substantial commercial flocks of the Whitefaced Woodland are kept in its region of origin, but it is listed as a vulnerable breed by the Rare Breeds Survival Trust, since there are fewer than 900 registered breeding females in Great Britain.


  • Breed Name: Whitefaced Woodland
  • Other Name: Penistone, Woodlands Horned and Woodland Whiteface
  • Breed Purpose: Meat
  • Breed Size: Large
  • Weight Between: 60 and 130 Kg
  • Horns: Yes
  • Climate Tolerance: Native climates
  • Color: White
  • Rarity: Common
  • Country/Place of Origin: United Kingdom

Description reads

The Whitefaced Woodland is one of the largest of British hill breeds.  Mature ewes weigh 60kg (135lb) but may reach 72.5kg (160 lb) in good grazing.

Animals of this breed are strong-boned and robust.  When left undocked, the tail is long. The wool is white and finer than that of many other hill breeds, being suitable for the manufacture of knitting or hosiery wool.

The staple length is 15-20cm (6-8 inches), and the Bradford Count is 44-50, although the wool on the britch is coarser. The face and legs are mainly white, although a little speckling is permissible.  The skin of the muzzle may be wholly or partly pink.


  • The Whitefaced Woodland is one of the largest hill breeds and is a powerful, well balanced sheep.
  • Ewes weigh around 60-70kg and rams can reach 130kg.
  • As the name suggests the face and head are white as are the legs.
  • Both ewes and rams are horned with rams having heavy spiraled horns that can on occasion grow too close to the head.
  • The tail is usually left undocked, especially in rams.


The Whitefaced Woodland sheep is one of the larger of the English hill sheep breeds. It is a powerful animal and has a well balanced body. Face and head of these animals are white and the legs are also of white color. They have short and fine wool which is often used in carpet. Both rams and ewes are horned and the horns of the rams are heavily spiraled.


  • Meat breed: Texel. Dual-purpose: Columbia.
  • Maternal breed: Polypay.
  • Whiteface breed: Merino. Blackface sheep. Fine wool: Rambouillet.
  • Long wool: Romney.
  • Natural colored.
  • Hair sheep: Katahdin.
  • Rat-tailed: East Friesian

Whitefaced Woodland images

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