Karacabey Merino Sheep

What is the history of Karacabey Merino Sheep?

The Merino was first introduced into Turkey from Spain in 1843. In 1928 Hungarian Merinos and in 1934 and later years German Mutton and Land Merinos were imported. Of these only the Mutton Merinos were used for improving the native sheep in the country.

Mutton Merinos, brought to Karacabey State Farm, Bursa, in 1934, were crossed with Kivircik sheep on this farm as well as on the private farms in Bursa and Balikesir provinces.

Crossbreeding between these two breeds was carried out in the form of upgrading to Merino. However, at Karacabey State Farm careful selection was also applied, and as a result a new Merino type, Karacabey Merino, was developed.

Karacabey Merinos are raised mainly in Bursa and Balikesir provinces of Marmara Region. The feeding and management conditions are similar to those of Kivircik sheep raised in the same provinces.

What are the characteristics of Karacabey Merino Sheep?

  • These sheep are white with a uniform fleece and a long tail.
  • The ewes are polled and 10–15 percent of rams are horned In body conformation, it resembles to the Mutton Merino.
  • Body weight, fleece weight and fleece quality of Karacabey Merino sheep are much superior to those of Kivircik. On the other hand, lambs have a satisfactory growth performance and a good survival ability.
  • They have an average of 1.4 lambs born per lambing, with lambs averaging 4.4 kgs at birth.
  • Karacabey Merino Sheep reach sexual maturity at 10 -14 months old.

What is the weight of mature Karacabey Merino Sheep?

Karacabey Merino ram is in the range of 80–95 kg and a mature ewe 55 - 65 kg. 

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