Anne Field was here and she was delightful and full of things to teach us. But I didn't bring the camera home and so I am distracting you with photos of sheep.
I went to pick up some Southdown fleeces and while I was there I went to look at the new babies.
Jacob sheep are a very old breed. Their origins are not known but it is thought that they came from the area of Syria over 3000 years ago. They were moved over time across North Africa and Sicily and Spain to England and to the US in the early 1900s.
They are different than other primitive breeds as they do not have multiple coats.
American Jacobs have not undergone "improvement" to make them more commercially suitable and so they still have that small boned, primitive body type.
American Tunis is one of the oldest US sheep breeds. The first importation was from the ruler of Tunisia to Pennsylvania in 1799. After that there were more importations of fat tailed sheep to the US which were crossed with the original sheep. The breed was quite popular as in 1892, Ezra Carmen in a chapter of A Report of the Sheep Industry of the U.S. wrote, " But for the introduction of the fine-wooled Merino, these Tunisian sheep would probably have become disseminated throughout the U.S., and in some of them have become the prevailing flocks."
Here he is close up. I hope they get a couple of ewes so I can have a flock of Tunis nearby and pretend they are mine. They are the pinkiest reddest sheep breed I know.
OK Back to the Jacobs. These are almost all of the Ewes who had babies this spring. They get a bell around their necks when they lamb because along with the dogs they scare away the coyotes.
Maggie finally got her wish to hold a lamb!
We never did get over to see those Scottish Balckface today. Bummer! Guess I'll just have to make another trip.
In the mean time, if any of you want to try either of these breeds you can check them out right here.