Dorper Sheep

Dorper Sheep

The Dorper is a breed of sheep that originated in the south of Africa in the 1940’s. It is the product of cross-breeding between the Dorset Horn and Blackhead Persian breeds. Dorper sheep have a distinctive appearance: black heads and white bodies.

The breed has a thick, well muscled carcass and extended period of fertility. Dorset ancestors are responsible for the latter trait. Today, the Dorper is an abundant and popular breed which has earned a reputation for strong mothering instinct.

Why Raise Dorpers?

Dorper sheep are highly adaptable to a variety of climates (as are most hair sheep breeds) and has gained popularity due to its resiliency and hardiness.

Dorper Ram
Dorper Ewes

Dorpers can be found in climates ranging from hot to humid to cool and dry.

Though Dorpers do have wool in addition to hair covering their bodies, they do not need to be sheared – a trait which is popular for many shepherds who consider wool production an expensive annual enterprise.

Typically, the Dorper breed can survive on different qualities of feed. They aren’t picky eaters.

Dorper lambs have earned a reputation for maturing quickly and this rapid development makes the Dorper breed an ideal choice for spring market lambs.

The sheepskin of the Dorper is the world’s most prized and the high-grade, muscular carcasses of this breed makes Dorpers a natural choice for commercial production farms. 

Dorper Sheep Size

Dorper Sheep Breed
Mature Ram Body Weight220 – 250 pounds
Mature Ewe Body Weight170 – 200 pounds

To learn more about Dorpers or to find a breeder near you, visit the American Dorper Sheep Breeders Society website.