Romney Sheep
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About Romney SheepAbout Romney Sheep



rnrnRomney Sheep are a dual purpose breed, used for woolrnand meat, that originated in the Romney Marshes of Kent England. They are onernof the world most successful sheep breeds.

rnrnThey are largernframed and carry a heavy long-wooled fleece. They have a broad white face,rnsometimes with a small woolly top knot. Both sexes are hornless. Ramsrnaverage 250 lbs., ewes average 175-200 lbs. Their fleece on average their fleecernweighs 10-12lbs.

rnrnRomney Sheep are veryrnhardy and easy to maintain. Due to their swampy origin, they are morernresistant to foot rot and liver flukes than most breeds.


rnrnWhether shorn once or twice a year, the wool clip from arnpurebred Romney flock is sought by commercial wool buyers and craftspeople. Itsrnbroad range of acceptable spinning counts enables Romney wool to be used forrnmany products, ranging from sweaters to outer wear to carpets. For therncommercial producer, incorporation of the heavy-shearing white Romney can addrnsignificantly to overall farm income.

rnrnThe long, lustrous fleece, hanging in separate locks, alsornmakes a white or natural colored Romney fleece especially attractive tornhandspinners. The fleece is easily spun in the grease or after washing andrncarding, and readily takes dye. The natural black, gray, silver, and brownrncolors of the natural colored Romneys are frequently among the most soughtrnafter fleeces at shows and sales. A handspinning-quality fleece may often sellrnfor three to ten times what a commercial buyer would pay for it.

rnrnHistory
rnrnRomney Sheep wererndeveloped, in the nineteenth century, by English ranchers that took indigenous RomneyrnMarsh sheep and crossbred them with Leicester sheep. They provided thernfoundation for the English woolen industry, which was the most important exportrncommodity in the Middle Ages. Their long, dense fleece was highly prized.

rnrnRomney sheep were exported internationally early in the 19thrnCentury when a shipment was sent to New Zealand. In 1856, Alfred Ludlumrnestablished New Zealand’s first Romney Marsh stud in 1860 at Newry, in the HuttrnValley. Ludlum's brother-in-law, Augustus Onslow Manby Gibbes, also bred Romneyrnaround this time in Australia—at his famous sheep property, “Yarralumla”.

rnrnIn 1904, William Riddell and Sons, of Monmouth Oregon USA,rnimported the first Romneys to North America, where their popularity increasedrnrapidly. The American Romney Breeders Association was founded in 1912 by JoernWing, a world traveler and a great judge of sheep. At one time with thernUniversity of California, he was an early secretary of the ARBA, and hisrnexpertise was instrumental in the development of Romneys in America. The firstrnpurebred natural colored Romneys, in America, were registered by thernAssociation in 1972 by Morris Culver of Curtin, Oregon. In the last threerndecades, the popularity of Romneys has spread from the West Coast across the America.

rnrnToday the sun never sets on Romney sheep. They are distributedrnthroughout England, New Zealand, Australia, Patagonia, Canada, Brazil,rnPortugal, Falkland Islands, and the United States.And in some countries, like New Zealand, theyrnhave become predominant sheep breed.

rnrnContent Source: America Romney Breeds Association and thernAustralian Romney Association, Inc.rnrn



Romney Sheep Associations


Natural Colored Wool Growers Association Natural Colored Wool Growers Association
www.ncwga.org
Since 1977 the purpose of NCWGA has been to assist members in the development and promotion of naturally-colored sheep and their wool. NCWGA can accomplish this by offering a number of services to members. These services include programs to support breeders of colored sheep, to support sheep shows which allow colored sheep, and to support the judges of those shows. 

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