Dohne Merino is a breed of sheep that has a very fine, soft, and lightweight wool. The sheep produce only about one pound of wool per year, making it a much more sustainable choice for clothing than other breeds. Dohne Merino is originated from South Africa in the late 1700s, brought over to New Zealand in the early 1900s, and in 2002 it was brought to the US. The wool is very soft with a lot of elasticity.
Dohne merino produces wool that is extremely water repellent, which makes it a great choice for outdoor clothing that gets wet relatively often, like hiking boots and rain gear. It also gives you warmth without being too heavy or bulky.
How to identify Dohne merino?
Dohne Merino is a naturally white or off-white color with a kinky coarseness and very fine wool. It is not kinky but has a spiral-like structure to the wool.
Dohne merino sheep are born black and turn white as they get older. The fleece of Dohne merinos has an average staple length of 6–10 cm, with each sheep averaging around 1 pound (454 g) of wool per year.
Dohne merino sheep are extremely curious and alert, with a herd mentality. they are very vocal, which can be a problem in high traffic areas. They have an average coat thickness of 10–15 microns. It has been proven to be much softer than merino wool that is sheared twice a year (once to keep it from matting and once to keep it clean).
The wool retains its softness after being spun into yarn and woven into fabric. Dohne merino is a very docile animal that is not inclined to flee when approached.
They are very intelligent and curious, they will follow you around if you have them out in the pasture, and they will baa at you if you have them penned. Dohne Merino has been used for many years as a highly versatile yarn in numerous industries: Clothing: fleece jackets, hats, sweaters, carpet wool…
- Great for felting
- Jersey and other knits
- Good for extra soft baby clothing
- Good for woven products like socks, hats, and carpets
- Great for a hot weather sweater for people who are into hiking and camping. the wool is amazingly lightweight and very water-resistant. it’s also great to wear in the summer when you’re working out.
- It can be dyed fairly easily with natural dyes (e.g.: lemon juice, wine, etc.
Dohne merino does tend to feel, but it felts very easily by hand. However, review the full breed profile of the Dohne merino in the following table.
|Breed Name||Dohne Merino|
|wool||fine, very soft, high elasticity, very water repellent, lightweight.|
|Other Name||South African Merino, South African Wool|
|Original Country of Origin||South Africa.|
|Breed Purpose||Wool and Meat|
|Weight||Adult (ram or ewe) about 33 – 46kg|
|Sheep Type||docile, friendly, alert, curious, agile.|
|Breed Season||early to mid-winter from March to September.|
|Climate Tolerance||very cold and dry climates.|
|Temperament||calm, curious, agile, affectionate.|
|Overall Color||White to Dark Brown.|
|As Pets||Yes. Pets sometimes get a long coat.|
|Lifespan||Three to four years for meat sheep.|
Produces a Super-Soft Wool. Used for many years as Wool and Feathers in Felt. Excellent Meat Sheep (superior quality and feed ration) that is easy to handle. Needs large fenced pastureland, minimum 5 to 7 acres, preferably with trees, as they are prone to flightiness. Their grazing requirements are very light but they have good resistance to parasites and tick-borne diseases of sheep.