Galway sheep characteristics

Galway sheep primarily raised for meat. The breed is from Galway in the west of Ireland.

Galway Sheep breed information

Galway sheep are large-sized white-faced sheep.

Ears of good length and fine texture, and free from black/brown sports; Nostrils dark in color and wide; Ram with the bold masculine head of medium size.

Galway sheep are docile, easy lambing and with good mothering abilities.

The mature Galway ram weighs 110 kg (240 lb) and ewe weighs 85 kg (190 lb).

The litter size is 1.4.

Both sexes are polled.

Fleece is white, moderately long. Fleece in general as uniform as possible in fiber texture.

The fleece is close and fine-textured with a broad staple and weighs approx. 3.5kgs or more

The fine fleeces are also very popular with hand spinners. 

Things to know

In the early 18th century the Bakewell’s Dishley Leicester an improved Leicester was imported by Ireland by Lord Roscommon. 

But the Roscommon sheep was large and it’s not longwool. So the breeders joined to form the Galway Sheep Breeders Society in 1923, Out of 200 rams and 6000 ewes by careful inspection. 600 ewes and 20 rams were admitted to the flock book following an inspection, and it was this selection that was chosen as the foundation stock of this pedigree breed.

Made this as a new breed called Galway. As the Society was founded at Athenry, Galway.

The Galway ewe is a great producer of finished lamb when bred pure and is also used for crossing with Down and Continental lambs to produce early lamb.

The Galway Greyface (Galway X Blackface) is particularly favored in Ireland.

Presently commercial Galway sheep farming is relatively common in the west of Ireland.

Brief characteristics of Galway Sheep

Breed NameGalway Sheep
Other Name 
Country/Place of OriginIreland
Breed Purposemeat
Breed Sizelarge
110 kg (240 lb)
Ewe(Female)85 kg (190 lb)
Good for Stall Fedopen grazing 
Climate Tolerancelocal conditions

Leave a Comment