Drysdale Sheep

What is the history of Drysdale Sheep?

The Drysdale breed of sheep originated in New Zealand and is raised primarily for wool. Dr. Francis Dry in 1931 using Romneys and Cheviots he kept the trait dominant, gaining a breed that needed shearing twice a year and which had long coarse wool suited to carpets and upholstery.

During the 1970's Drysdales were brought to Australia from New Zealand and after initial popularity, the wool collapse in the 1980's, impacted on the breed and the numbers dropped dramatically.

What are the characteristics of Drysdale Sheep?

  • Both male and female Drysdales to be horned.
  • The male's horn resembles a Wiltshire ram's horn where as the ewe's horns are very small.
  • Drysdales are medium-sized sheep and can be considered dual purpose for wool and meat.
  • Foot problems are rare.
  • Lambing rates of 120%, excellent mothering ability.
  • They are calm temperament, intelligent, good natured and hardy.
  • The wool of the Drysdale is without crimp, highly medullated, with a fiber diameter of 35 microns.
  • The long, hairy fibers evident in the young lamb help it through difficult bleak periods, and losses to weaning are claimed to be low.
  • Fleece growth is highly responsive to the season and sheep will grow at least 25mm a month.
  • Shorn twice a year, both clips yield a generous fleece.
  • It is white wool without lustre and has plenty of spring.
  • Regarded as a wool breed, they nonetheless eat well.

What is the weight of mature Drysdale Sheep?

Drysdale ram is in the range of 75–100 kg and a mature ewe 55–70 kg.

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