Sheep Breeds: List of Breeds of Sheep
Here is a resource list of more than 50 of the most common sheep breeds. We've done our best to sort this list for easy browsing - presenting images of each breed of sheep to make it easy to find the breed you're interested in learning more about. We've separated this list of 50+ sheep breeds into six categories:
The name of each sheep breed will appear by hovering your mouse over the photograph. For more information on any of these sheep breeds simply click on the photograph.
Meat Sheep Breeds
Meat sheep breeds produce wool but most shepherds raise these sheep for their rapid rate of growth and high yield carcasses. These breeds are often very popular in the show ring due to their flashy appearance and the fact that breeders are usually easy to locate.
Long Wool Sheep Breeds
Handspinners often raise long wool sheep breeds as these animals produce long, lustrous fleece which is easy to work with. Though not as large or fast-growing as the meat breeds listed above, long wool sheep breeds are popular around the world.
Fine Wool Sheep Breeds
While fine wool breeds don't produce a fleece with as long a staple (length) as the long-wool breeds listed above, their high-quality fleeces are highly valued for commercial uses. Wool from these sheep breeds can be found in many high-end woolen clothes.
Dual Purpose Sheep Breeds
Dual purpose breeds are popular due to their versatility. Shepherds who value sheep which can produce a serviceable fleece while also exhibiting rapid growth often raise dual purpose sheep breeds. Click on any of the images below to learn more.
Hair Sheep Breeds
Sometimes confused with goats, hair sheep are increasing in popularity as these animals reduce production time and cost (no annual investment in shearing) and many hair sheep breeds also have a resistance to parasites which can lead to a significant savings in annual medical expenses. Hair sheep breeds offer a very unique and distinctive appearance - click any tile for more photos.
Minor Sheep Breeds
Many of the sheep breeds listed in this category are more difficult to find in certain regions of the world, but each offers something unique which makes the breed beloved by the shepherds who raise them.
Table of Sheep Breeds in our Directory
|Meat Sheep Breeds||Long Wool Sheep Breeds||Fine Wool Sheep Breeds||Dual Purpose Breeds||Hair Sheep Breeds||Minor Breeds|
|Cheviot||Border Leicester||American Cormo||Miniature Brecknock||American Blackbelly||Black Welsh Mountain|
|Dorset||Coopworth||Booroola Merino||Columbia||Barbados Blackbelly||Blueface Leicester|
|Hampshire||Cotswold||Debouillet||Corriedale||California Red||California Variegated Mutant|
|Montadale||Lincoln||Delaine-Merino||East Friesian||Dorper||Clun Forest|
|North County Cheviot||Perendale||Rambouillet||Finnsheep||Katahdin||Gulf Coast|
|Shropshire||Wensleydale||Polypay||Royal White Sheep||Jacob|