Soay are very hardy and healthy sheep, very rarely suffering from foot problems or flystrike. The Soay (Ovis aries) is a small Scottish wool sheep which is often grouped with the northern short-tailed breeds but it is in fact more primitive. Bronze Age. Ewes that don’t lamb often don’t shed. 8. The Soay sheep is a breed of domestic sheep (Ovis aries) descended from a population of feral sheep on the 250-acre (100 ha) island of Soay in the St. Kilda Archipelago, about 65 kilometres (40 mi) from the Western Isles of Scotland.It is one of the Northern European short-tailed sheep breeds.. Ewes are either two-horned, polled, or scurred. The fleece is normally 'roo'ed', or peeled from the sheep, and this leaves the hairs behind to fall out later, while the soft wool can then be spun without pricky bits. The Soay sheep is a breed of domestic sheep from Scotland. Its origins are in the wilds of western Scotland and its most important characteristic is its variety - variety in size, shape, wool and temperament. Soay Ewe fully shed, Ruaival, Hirta. This breed is one of the Northern European short-tail breeds and produces extremely fine wool. They are excellent conservation grazers, being content in The Soay lack the flocking instinct of most sheep and can be initially aloof, but friendly once you gain their confidence. Soay While some Soay sheep were relocated to form exotic flocks, this breed has largely remained feral and helps Soay’s ecosystem with its excellent agility, allowing it to graze in areas domestic sheep cannot. Soay sheep are fine-boned and late maturing, with prominent withers. The Soay sheep is a breed of domestic sheep (Ovis aries) descended from a population of feral sheep on the 100-hectare (250-acre) island of Soay in the St Kilda Archipelago, about 65 kilometres (40 mi) from the Western Isles of Scotland. Their wool makes a fine, soft worsted-spun knitting yarn or a strong, woollen-spun hardwearing yarn for rugs or throws, and also takes dye well. They are a hardy small breed originally from Scotland. observed on Hirta, and occur occasionally in sheep owners' flocks. when? It is made from raw wool so still has the lanolin present... and the sheepy smell It is 18 inches wide and 27 inches long. Menu Skip to content. Ewes grow to 40-50 lbs. Search for: Wool Hand Spinning Lessons. sheep are fine-boned and late maturing, with prominent withers. Soay sheep naturally shed their wool which can be plucked, rather than sheared, in the Spring or early Summer. In our experience annual production per animal averages one and two pounds of fleece with a staple length of one to three inches and quality of 44s-50s (36-29 microns). To establish or expand your own flock of Soay sheep, please contact any or all of us. Contact us for availability of wool. craft uses and their carcass produces lean meat of a delicious flavour The breed has fine fleece ranging in color from tan to dark brown and black. woodland and on hillsides. The Soay are small framed, good legs and a fleece varying from light to dark brown and sheds naturally in the summer. We love sharing our knowledge of Soay Sheep with interested breeders and beginners. Card,greeting card, blank inside, happy birthday, celebration card,anniversary,sheep, Soay sheep, Rare breed sheep, ewes, wool GillsPhotogifts. Fleeces are grey or creamy white on the body, though darker individuals occur whose colouring is similar to the Soay sheep. If you are interested in purchasing lambs or wool, or have any questions at all just e-mail us! Their fleece is unique with a staple length of 5-15cm and a weight of up to 2kg. We believe that cooperation is the key to long-term success in breeding and marketing Soay sheep. I'm so far behind on blogging that I'll never catch up, so here's an overview of this year's wonderful Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival. The fleece is, normally, shed naturally. The texture of their wool can vary, from soft fine wool to more coarse hairy fibres (or "kemps"), and mixtures in-between. The tenant islanders kept their sheep on Hirta and Boreray, whilst the Soay sheep, which belonged to the proprietor, lived separately on their native isle of Soay. of them they talk of intelligent, nimble animals with excellent Evidence for this comes from the similarity of skeletal remains with those of the Soay, 4Ryder, op cit., I8 THE AGRICULTURAL HISTORY REVIEW BLACK-FACED HORNED WHITE-FACED HORNED LONOWOOLS SHEEP NOTED FOR FINE WOOL NO CLEAR INFORMATION ¢~ I FIGURE 2 Distribution of the breed types about … mixtures in-between. Many people who spin wool enjoy the rare and primitive look of the fleece. Ewes that don’t lamb often don’t shed. The wool industry has tried to eliminate colored sheep and wool for centuries. mothering habits, always with quirky behavioural traits and lots of fun A tweed is a rough-surfaced coarse cloth, typically made in Scotland. The SDG Farm is located in Addison County, Vermont, in the Town of Whiting. Unlike modern white wooly sheep, the Soay varies in color from a light brown to virtually black coat on the upper body and a white belly. They are a small short tailed breed of sheep that naturally shed their wool coat in the spring months. While I have never been much of a knitter or crocheter, I have always found the hobby to be very intriguing. How did they arrive at the St. Kilda islands and characteristics plus a history that evokes a romanticism back to the These lovely sheep are listed as at risk by the rare Breed Survival Trust. The Soay is a small (45 to 90 pound), hardy domestic sheep. December 20, 2016 January 7, 2017 / Amanda Morningstar / Leave a comment. Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival 2012. For hundreds of years St.Kildans rowed from Hirta to Soay in the summer to collect fleece from the shedding native sheep that lived there. If we don't have what you are looking for we probably know someone that does, and if we don't have the answer - we'll find someone who does. Margaret B. Russell of Antrim Handweaving (, in Byfield Massachusetts has been using RBST Soay in her weaving and teaching with a commitment to preserve both the art of handweaving and heritage British breeds such as the Soay. Soay wool varies from light to dark brown, and is naturally shed in the late spring and summer after lambing. Name of these animals is derived from the island of Soay. White wool can be dyed any color, whereas dying options starting with colored wool are limited and unpredictable. are unlike any other sheep, being the most primitive with very varied and rams 70-80 lbs. As you can imagine between full time jobs and full time farming we keep pretty busy, but we make every effort to return emails promptly. It is one of the Northern European short-tailed sheep breeds. brown Soay sheep that survives in a feral state on St Kilda off north-west Scotland. The rooed (hand plucked) wool they collected was taken back to Hirta to be processed later in the year. No one really knows. Posted at 07:38 AM in Food and Drink, Rare wools, Sheep: Soay, Wool, Wools, rare breed | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0) | Digg This | Save to | May 17, 2012. Scurred rams have been From shop GillsPhotogifts. Ewes can appear polled, scurred or horned while rams are either scurred or horned. Reply. 3. The breeders listed here have contributed to the Open Flockbook Project. In the spring, Soay fleece comes off by itself in clumps. The remarkably fine fleece can be variable in quality. The tail is short and thin. No one is certain of its origins, however, it is thought to be the remnant of a prehistoric semi-domestic sheep brought to Britain prior to the invasion of the Romans; certainly the Soay is the UK's oldest surviving livestock breed. Naturally short tailed, these sheep do not need their tails docked, and because they molt in the spring they generally do not need to be shorn. Home; About Us; Search. These hardy, golden white long lustre-woolled sheep are effectively responsible for the smooth landscapes of Gloucestershire! 5 out of 5 stars (8) 8 reviews $ 5.23. Soay sheep have wool they shed. Soay wool is usually short. Soay to watch. They love browsing and eating weeds and shrub making them ideal for conservation grazing. Introducing Soay Sheep. Never-the less many white breeds of sheep have recessive color genetics buried in their genomes. I have a small flock and they’re awesome! The tail is short and thin. Soay fetching premium prices for the gourmet trade. Ewes can be polled, scurred or horned and rams are either horned or scurred. Whiting was established om August 6th, 1763. Soay sheep generally shed their entire fleece naturally, which means it has to be either collected in the field or plucked (rooed) from the animal in spring or early summer. Some also have white patches. Middle photo by Christine Williams, Soay wool varies from light to dark brown, and is naturally shed in the late spring and summer after lambing. Soay are small, averaging 45-60 pounds for ewes and 60-70 for males. Juniata Valley Soay Sheep Homesteading Adventures at the Longfellow House. Soay fleece has a short staple and some hairs as well as wool. WOOL AND FIBER: Soay, an Ancient Breed, a Novelty wool . Its colour is a mix of flecked colours. Spinning is achieved by twisting fiber into a continuous thread by hand with a drop spindle or by using a spinning wheel. Rams The remarkably fine fleece can be variable in quality. View Replies (1) Pam 1 year ago I live in the country and know people who raise some of these varieties for meat sales and they do pretty well. Soay make fantastic mothers, the lambs are very alert and up on their feet in minutes. The coloured fleece is sought after for many British Soay wool is cherished by hand spinners, an art mastered by determination and patience. They are smart, social, hardy, and extraordinarily agile. The wool is extremely fine and fleeces have a soft inner coat with outer coarser hairs which can be removed before spinning. But what we do know is that when owners talk As of the 2010 U.S. Census, Whiting had a human population of 419. The males of this breed are horned and the females may be either polled or horned. The texture of their wool can vary, They are similar to the mouflon seen wild in Corsica, The fleece is, normally, shed naturally. While the double coat contains finer and coarser fibers, the two types can be hard to differentiate. A few are solid black. Soay Wool Products. Ideal for reenactment, homesteading etc. Soay are much smaller than modern domesticated sheep. Sardinia and Cyprus. The Soay sheep is an old breed of sheep that descended from feral sheep on the small island of Soay in the St. Kilda Achipelago. They were larger than the Soay and grew creamy white wool coats. In the mid-1800s, Whiting had more than 4000 head of sheep (among 23 flocks) at the time that Vermont was the leading wool-producing state in the union. Jacob B Frank 1 year ago Any dairy hair sheep? In 1932 this island was evacuated and, in 1932, 107 Soay sheep (20 rams, 44 ewes, 22 ram lambs and 21 ewe lambs) were brought from the island of Soay and released. Unlike domestic breeds, Soay sheep shed their fleece naturally in the spring/early summer and at this time all of the wool is collected from the fields, places where the sheep have rubbed against the fences or trees. Partially shed Soay ewe, Hirta Ram in the village area that has fully shed his fleece. We do not currently have any Soay wool products in stock. Reply. The islanders frequently went there for … NOTE: The photos at the beginning of this article are mainland (UK) sheep because we have only visited St. Kilda in the summer months when fleece differences are not as obvious as when they have their winter coats . Soay do not require shearing since they will cast (shed) their wool in spring. It is believed Neolithic farmers began domesticating Soay for wool which is hand-plucked (rooed) as they molt in spring. are two-horned and the horns are strong. Soay sheep are fine-boned and late maturing, with prominent withers. The fleece is, normally, shed naturally. from soft fine wool to more coarse hairy fibres (or "kemps"), and It has descended from a population of feral sheep on the 250 acre island of Soay in the St. Kilda Archipelago. The sheep are also fine boned, very nimble and intelligent animals, and the … If the wool is rooed (hand plucked) the guard hairs remain on the animal to fall out later, making for a cleaner softer fleece. Still River Mill, a small family operated spinning mill in Eastford, Connecticut also now has expertise in processing British Soay fiber if hand spinning is not an option. Rough in quality, the wool is mostly used in the creation of tweeds or carpet yarns. Although the joints are small, Soay meat is unlike any other breed, being Wool can be collected just before shedding by either plucking (“rooing”) or shearing if desired. Yarn can be processed for knitting or for weaving. Although the fleece was picked over and most of the debris picked out, it does still have a little straw here and there. Weaver says the sheep look pretty ratty for awhile, but you don't have to shear them. British Registered Soay sheep WOOL, FIBER AND MEAT . sheep are classified as "vulnerable" on the RBST survival watch list. The island of Soay is about 65 kilometers from the Western Isles of Scotland. Like antelope, Soay sheep “stott” (sprint-jump on all fours) when alarmed or exuberant. The texture of their wool can vary, from soft fine wool to more coarse hairy fibres (or “kemps”), and mixtures in-between. While the double coat contains finer and coarser fibers, the two types can be hard to differentiate. The tail is short and thin.

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