English Suffolk sheep breed: appearance, description of sheep and sheep breed
Sheep breeding around the world occupies a leading position in the livestock industry, so it is common for each region to adapt sheep breeds to local living conditions. For this reason, the diversity of species is striking in its quantity. The Suffolk sheep breed has become one of the most popular due to its high productivity.
English breed Suffolk
Suffolk is a massive hornless breed of sheep, meat and wool direction. It has a very high immunity, physical strength, is growing rapidly and has a high lethal rate.
Did you know? A lamb is born with smooth shoulders and a narrow head, which minimizes mortality and lambing problems.
Suffolks were officially registered in 1810 in England, however, a stud book was formed after 76 years. Suffolks gained their popularity in the early twentieth century around the world. This breed is the result of crossing the Southdown sheep with the horned black chord Norfolk. Sheep are bred in Suffolk, Essex, Cambridge. They possess nutritious meat and high-quality wool thanks to the Southdown breed.
Norfolk are recognized as a hardy breed because of their ability to survive in harsh climatic conditions, frosty climates and windy areas. As a result, a muscular body and strong immunity, which they inherited from the Suffolks. All the necessary characteristics and qualities of the breed have been improved thanks to a careful selection of individuals.
The main characteristics of the breed
Suffolks are fast-growing, large, with a good lethal rate. Are centenarians with excellent immunity, parasite resistant, high fertility. The main reason for the popularity of the breed is its nutritious and tasty meat without the inherent lamb specific smell. Unpretentious to food and habitat.
Did you know? Due to the special structure of the legs, the sheep are perfectly adapted to a humid climate, and with severe drought, the birth rate remains at the same level.
Appearance and description
Suffolk has a strong physique, with a black head and black limbs not covered with fleece. The ears of animals are quite thin, drooping. The tail is short without fat, limbs are straight, rather sinewy. The back is straight, the sacrum is massive, the head is medium in size. There are no horns.
Suffolk is a muscular tall ram, the height of an adult male reaches 80 cm, and weight varies from 110 to 160 kg. The height of the female is within 74 cm with a weight of 80 to 140 kg. The weight of lambs at birth is from 3.5 to 7 kg, twins - 4.2–5 kg, triplets - 3.5–4 kg. With intensive nutrition, lambs can reach a weight of 35–40 kg at the age of 3-4 months. From the first days, lambs gain weight well, because mother's milk is sufficiently fat. The meat yield is 50–52%. At the age of 6 months are already considered sexually mature.
Wool is famous for its durability.
Representatives of the species are famous for quality wool. The fleece is crimped, semi-thin, of a pleasant white or golden color. A haircut is necessary twice a year. The yield of wool from an adult animal is 3-5 kg, from which it will turn out up to 60% clean, fiber diameter 30–34 microns.
Performance features: wool, meat
Suffolk wool is of very high quality: soft, thin, crossbred type. Breathable properties retain heat. Fibers 7-10 cm long. Wool products are very durable.
The meat of this breed has nutritious beneficial properties, has no inherent lamb odor, has a delicate taste, juicy meat. The product is easily absorbed by the body, practically does not contain cholesterol, and the presence of lecithin helps to prevent diabetes. High levels of fluoride will prevent caries. Lambs are ready for the market in 9-12 weeks. Muscle mass is very well developed, and due to the light skeleton the slaughter yield of meat at Suffolks is maximum, reaching 55-60%.
Advantages and disadvantages of the breed
The advantages of this breed over other sheep breeds are many:
- high productivity of meat and wool;
- adapted to temperature differences;
- very high immunity;
- nutritious meat product, rich in healthy substances;
- high daily gain of lambs;
- unpretentiousness in the maintenance (pasture and stall);
- fertility of females.
- limb diseases are noted;
- problems with large-fruited, lambing is difficult, help is needed.
The breed got its distribution due to its unpretentiousness in feeding and keeping. Even eating only pasture, they quickly increase weight.. It is necessary to feed with grain mixtures and combined feeds with a sufficient amount of trace elements, vitamins and minerals.
Important! Suffolk is not recommended to drive to distant pastures (at a distance of 4–6 km) on dusty roads, at a fast pace.
Neither external nor internal parasitic infections are kept on these sheep, due to their body constitution. Hoof rot is practically not common among them, but regular prophylaxis of endoparasites is required (without such prophylaxis, intense croupous outflow from the nose may appear). Due to its good heredity and endurance, Suffolks do not require special care, adapt to even the most severe climatic conditionswithout experiencing any particular discomfort where not every sheep species can survive.
To obtain high results, you just need to ensure the herd distillation of unpretentious sheep in intensive pastures. Stall content is also possible
Due to milk production, the presence of strong hooves and a wide pelvis, common problems associated with keeping sheep, such as poor growth, problems with lambing, limb diseases, do not apply to this breed.
This species of sheep is highly productive in breeding. It gives excellent crosses with more advanced meat qualities as a result of crossbreeding with other breeds, as a result - the fast growth of lambs with obtaining dietary meat. Intra breed features are unchanged.
Females are multiple: 130-190 lambs per 100 bright. Lambing occurs once a year. With each subsequent crossing with Suffolk sheep, the number of lambing per year increases to two, and meat characteristics improve. As early as 7–8 months, the first mating occurs.
Since the beginning of the twentieth century, Suffolk sheep are bred in Europe, North and South America, Russia and New Zealand. In the CIS countries, the breed was repeatedly imported and used when crossing with other breeds.
Important! Pastures located in the sun are not suitable for grazing, as the black head heats up, and the sheep do not graze in the sun, but are aimed at finding a shadow.
Breeding Suffolk will be uniquely profitable, due to the high level of development of key indicators that every farmer should consider when choosing a breed for breeding. The ease of feeding and care, the absence of signs of disease and infection, a good life expectancy and a large offspring with easy growth, and, of course, the most important thing - the yield of food and high-quality wool makes the breed a priority among other sheep breeds.