Devon Closewool Sheep

What is the history of Devon Closewool Sheep?

The Devon Closewool is a breed of the domestic sheep originating in the Exmoor region of southwest England. The breed arose around the mid-1800’s when Exmoor Horn sheep were crossed with the Devon Longwools. The resultant intermediate-sized sheep proved very popular and expanded rapidly in numbers.

The Devon Closewool Sheep Breeders Society was formed in 1923.

What are the characteristics of Devon Closewool Sheep?

  • Devon Closewool a medium sized white faced sheep without horns.
  • The nostrils are black, the ears are short and thick being covered with thick white hair.
  • The neck is short and thick, well set into the shoulders.
  • The ribs are well sprung with good depth.
  • The back is flat, wide and long and the leg of mutton is well let down.
  • The Devon Closewool is a very hardy sheep with a docile temperament making it an ideal sheep for the first time flockmaster or the commercial farmer looking for an easy care, low input sheep who survives and thrives on a purely grass based diet.
  • Lambing percentages are usually between 150-170% and are even higher in lowland flocks.
  • Ewes remain prolific and productive for up to seven crops and hold their teeth well.
  • Rams are fertile over a long working life (6-7 years).
  • The fleece of rams weighs 6 kgs, ewes 4 kgs with a micron count of 48-53.
  • The wool is dense, medium length with a strong staple which does not part easily so the skin stays dry.
  • This enables the sheep to thrive in wet, cold conditions.

What is the weight of mature Devon Closewool Sheep?

Devon Closewool ram is in the range of 90 kg and a mature ewe 55 - 60 kg.

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