American Cotswold Record Association

The Original Registry Of Purebred Cotswold Sheep

Ewes' Build

(Background of this page is an actual photo of super-lustrous Cotswold fleece)

 

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Real, traditional Cotswold sheep have small heads compared to other longwool breeds, and slightly longer necks.  These traits are associated with hardiness and easy births.  This yearling (teg) ewe sports a small head, held high.

By 1912, experts reported an interesting factor that differentiated Cotswolds from similar breeds---their heads are typically held higher---according to John A. Craig, then Professor of Animal Husbandry at the University of Wisconsin.

 

Longer-necked ewes, though not considered "in fashion" by some breeders, are associated with higher reproductive success.

The flank of Cotswold sheep normally tapers upward toward the crotch starting from farther forward than in other breeds.  Once referred to as "weak in the flank" this trait is due to a funnel-shaped rear torso that assists in giving birth to lambs.

Some of today's popular breeds may start losing teeth by age 6 and are therefore culled after their fourth or fifth lambing.  Generally, Cotswolds don't begin losing teeth until age 9 or 10, some continuing productive as mothers past 12 years of age.

Cotswolds should be selected for a tight, healthy udder.  Some bloodlines do carry hyperthelia (more than 2 nipples) which is a dominant factor that can predispose to various difficulties at lambing.  Buyers should be aware of this, and try to select, if possible rams and ewes with only two teats.  Neither side of a ewe's "bag" (udder) should be harder than the other side, nor shriveled.

Black is the preferred color for hooves, being supposed more resistant to foot rot, a crippling bacterial/fungal disease of the feet.  Foot rot is extremely rare in Cotswold sheep.

Last Updated: 05/09/2011
2009 by the American Cotswold Record Association
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