Greyface Sheep: Best 10+ Information

Greyface sheep are a rare breed of sheep that have a natural mutation in their DNA that causes them to be born with black wool. They are domestic sheep originating around Dartmoor in southwest England. The sheep originated in the 17th century on the Dartmoor moorlands, a region of high rainfall and deep peat bogs.

Greyface Sheeps kids
Greyface Sheep’s kids

The breed was considered to have been in danger of extinction by 1973 but eventually had a resurgence after being saved from what was set to be the last herd in 1977. Canaan sheep are akin to the Greyface variant. These sheep do not carry a mutation for black wool. There are many different species of sheep, but one species has the unusual trait of having grey faces. These sheep are called Greyface sheep.


How to identify Greyface sheep?

  • The sheep have completely grey faces, however, the rest of their body is covered in black wool.
  • A fully grown Greyface sheep is about 5 feet tall and weighs about 120 pounds.
  • The sheep are considered to be healthy even though they do not produce merino wool. They also have no wool over their eyes. The sheep also produce excellent-tasting meat and are also grass eaters.
  • The coloration of Greyface sheep is caused by a recessive gene. The gene for black wool is dominant, so to have the grey face you must inherit two copies of the recessive gene. If a sheep inherits only one copy of the gene, its wool will be dark but not completely black.
  • There are about 1,000 to 2,000 Greyface sheep in the world today. The sheep are considered to be endangered.
Greyface sheep for wool
Greyface sheep for wool

Behavioral characteristics:

Greyface sheep are social, docile, and friendly. Greyface sheep are extremely intelligent and easy to train. They can understand commands and even recognize certain words. When These sheep are unhappy or upset, they will stamp their feet, grunt, or bleat. This is a sign that it is feeling nervous or uncomfortable.

If it bleats when you pick it up, then this will mean that it wants to be held by you. These sheep are good at adapting themselves to their surroundings. For example, they are partially grass eaters.

They will consume the straw and grass in their environment, but they also like to graze on the pastures. The breeding of Greyface sheep is very advanced. Greyface sheep are usually black with gray or brown eyes. The milk from a female Greyface sheep will come from both breasts.

Best uses

Greyface sheep are excellent for not only meat but also wool. The wool will come in solid colors and make excellent yarns of all kinds, especially of electric blue.

Greyface Sheeps wool
Greyface Sheep’s wool

Their appearance is striking, especially in the fall when they are covered in their beards. The gray sheep may also be seen in a variety of colors, including black, brown, red, and white. Although the dark coloring makes them look menacing, they have small ears and bright eyes which make them rather cute to look at.

The sheep do not produce their wool and require the help of other animals such as goats and alpacas to provide the wool. However, the sheep are good at multiplying quickly (about 6 per year) so they will soon be able to produce enough wool to satisfy their needs.

Best 10+ information

The black sheep are quite rare, and the reason for this is their high lamb mortality rate. This can be attributed to the fact that they are born prematurely and often with various health problems. In addition to this, the sheep have low resistance against diseases and other parasites as well.

Most of the black sheep who survive become commercially extinct within a very short time due to their low survival rate. However, review full breed profile of the Greyface sheep in the following table.

Breed NameGreyface Sheep
Other NameBlack Face sheep
Country of OriginGreat Britain
Breed TypeDomestic Animal
Fur TypeWool, Black
Weight110 to 120 Pounds
TemperamentFriendly, Docile, Social Animal
Climate ToleranceCold, Moist
ColorBlack, Gray
RarityExtremely Rare
As PetsEasy to Train and Socialize, Very Intelligent Animal. Considered easy to Handel and Care For.
Life expectancy8-12 Years

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