NORTH RONALDSAY

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The following information is taken from "The World of Coloured Sheep", published at the time of the The 6th Congress on Coloured Sheep, complied and edited by Roger S. Lundie and Elspeth J. Wilkinson, page 71.  Additional information about North Ronaldsays can also be found in "In Sheep's Clothing" by Nola Fournier and Jane Fournier, published by Interweave Press Inc, page 155.

The North Ronaldsay fits into the primitive short tailed sheep group.  It s origins may be similar to others in that group such as the Shetlands.  Archeological evidence shows similar sheep at Skara Brae dating from the Bronze Age.  Recent analysis of genotype information shows that the North Ronaldsay is the only one of the British short tailed sheep breeds that remains genetically similar to the original type.  All the others, including Soay, Herbrideans and Shetlands, have had a lot more genetic contributions from other types of sheep.

Description:

A small, hardy primitive breed, with a short thin tails, fine bones and a small head that is dished on the ewes.  Rams range from 30 - 35 Kg; ewes around 25 kg.

Wool is double coated, fairly fine and can have some kemp. Its micron ranges from 26 - 30 and the staple length is 2 - 4" (up to 100mm). All colours are found from white through greys to black, the browns tones and spots.  Ram often develop a mane and beard of coarser fibre.

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