Portland sheep characteristics

Portland sheep primarily raised for meat. The breed is from the Isle of Portland in Dorset, England. Portland was the primary contributor to the Dorset breed.

Portland sheep breed information

The Portland is a small-sized breed which has a cream fleece and golden tan face and legs.

Both males and females are horned. The ram horns are heavy and have double spirals. The female horns are lighter and shorter.

The lambs are born with a foxy-red colored coat but gradually turns to a creamy white as they grow.

The feet and nose are mainly black.

The meat is highly prized and has complex flavor.

The Portland sheep produce a fleece of 2 to 3 kg with a staple length of 6 to 9 cm and a quality of 50 to 60 microns.

The wool is used for hosiery and hand-knitting yarns.

Portland breed will sometimes breed out of season.

The Portland will eat rough grasses and does browse on shrubs so it is a good choice for certain conservation grazing situations.

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Things to know

Portland sheep are one of the first breeds in Britain able to have lambs at any time of the year.

Portland sheep is one of the most rear and still at risk.

“Rare Breeds Survival Trust” constant efforts have brought out eh Portland breed from extinction. The breed is now listed as “at-risk”.

Portland sheep characteristics

Breed NamePortland sheep
Other Name 
Country/Place of OriginEngland
Breed Purposeamericameat
Breed Sizemedium
 50 kg (110 lb)
Ewe(Female)35 kg (77 lb)
Good for Stall Fedopen grazing 
Climate Tolerancelocal conditions

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