Italian Biellese sheep

Biellese is a large sheep that are primarily raised for meat, comes from the province of Biella, in the Piedmont region of northern Italy.

Biellese sheep breed information

A large breed which is grown primarily for the meat purpose. But initially, it was used as a dual-purpose breed, yielding meat, and wool.

They are white and uni-colored.

One of the Lop-eared Alpine group of sheep breeds.

The mature ram can weigh around  100 kg (220 lbs) and the ewe is 82 kg (180 lbs).

Lambs are slaughtered at a weight to 12 to 15 kg.

The wool is of carpet quality where rams yield around 3.5 kg and ewes around 3 kg per shearing.

Both rams and ewes are polled.

The ram grows around 86 cm at withers and ewe around 81 cm at withers.

Things to know

Biellese got its name from the region its originated – Biella.

Also known as  Razza d’Ivrea and Piemontese Alpina.

The total population was estimated at 40,000 in 1942 and the total population decreased sharply after the Second World War.

According to Wikipedia, it is one of 17 autochthonous Italian sheep breeds for which a genealogical herdbook is kept by the Associazione Nazionale Della Pastorizia, the Italian national association of sheep-breeders.

About 75 % of the breed population is managed and rest are nomadic. From June to October they are raised on Alpine pasture and during winter they are fed hay.

Brief characteristics of Biellese

Breed NameBiellese
Other NameRazza d’Ivrea and Piemontese Alpina
Country/Place of OriginItaly
Breed PurposeMeat 
Breed Sizelarge
100 kg (220 lbs)
Ewe(Female)82 kg (180 lbs)
Good for Stall Fedopen grazing 
Climate Tolerancelocal conditions

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