Boreray sheep – The Conservation grazer

 Boreray sheep primarily raised for meat and wool. The sheep’s origin was in St Kilda archipelago of Scotland. Nowadays the breed is used for “Conservation grazing”. which means grazing that uses livestock to improve biodiversity and achieve nature conservation in a given area.

Boreray sheep breed information

Boreray is the small sheep breed.

Both ram and ewe have horns, some times more than one pair. The horns are spiral in shape.

They have short tails. They shed their fleece naturally.

Fleeces are in creamy white or grey in color. 

Quality of fleece is rough so the wool is used to make carpet yarns or tweeds.

The face and legs are wool-free.

The matured ram weighs around 45 kg (99 lb) and ewes around 30 kg (66 lb).

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Things to know

Boreray sheep was a feral animal on one of the islands of Boreray of St Kilda archipelago. 

Boreray belongs to the short-tailed sheep group of northern Europe.

St Kilda archipelago is famous for other sheep breeds too Soay sheep and Hebridean sheep (St Kilda sheep).

2017 the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) estimated that there are 426 breeding ewes.

As the breed is improving its number, the “Rare Breeds Survival Trust” classified the breed from critical to vulnerable.

Brief characteristics of Boreray sheep

Breed NameBoreray sheep
Other NameHebridean Blackface and Boreray Blackface
Country/Place of OriginScotland
Breed Purposewool and meat
Breed Sizesmall
45 kg (99 lb)
Ewe(Female)30 kg (66 lb)
Good for Stall Fedopen grazing 
Climate Tolerancelocal conditions

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