Barbados Blackbelly Sheep

Barbados Blackbelly Sheep

The Barbados Blackbelly sheep breed is native to Barbados, one of the Caribbean Islands. The breed is a direct descendant of West African sheep introduced to the island during the age of the African slave trade.

What Do Barbados Blackbelly Sheep Look Like?

Their wild striking appearance means that Barbados Blackbelly are often compared to antelope. Generally, this breed is light brown, red-brown, tan or yellow. These sheep have striking black bellies and a black and white “badger” face.

Barbados Blackbelly Ram
photo courtesy of Mary Swindell & the BBSAI

Some Barbados Blackbelly have short fuzzy hair under their main coat. This typically sheds (along with the rest of the hair) on an annual basis.

About the Breed

Barbados Blackbelly Sheep Breed Information

The Barbados Blackbelly is a very resilient breed. It is sought after for it’s efficient reproduction. This is one of the reasons this hair breed is one of the most abundant breeds in the world.

In the 1970s breeders in Texas crossed the Barbados Blackbelly with Mouflon and Rambouillet to produce the American Blackbelly. This is a separate, horned breed of hair sheep which bears a striking resemblance to its Barbados Blackbelly ancestors.

Shepherds interested in a natural, grass-fed approach to farming may choose to have a flock of Barbados Blackbellies.

This breed does not require chemical additives like some domestic breeds, thriving on foods which many would consider poor quality.

Barbados Blackbelly Size

Mature Body WeightRam: 90 – 150 pounds
Ewe: 85 – 100 pounds

To learn more about the breed or to find a breeder near you visit the Barbados Blackbelly Sheep Association International website.