Choosing a Profitable Breed of Sheep

Editor's note
The following abstract describes a publication that is only available for purchase. A link to ordering information is on this page.

North Central Regional Publication
Originally published by the University of Minnesota, this publication has been adapted for regional distribution

According to this publication, sheep should be chosen for traits that are economically important, possible to measure, that can thrive in the given environment and that can maximize production efficiency. Some of the desired economic traits covered include those of reproduction, growth, wool production and others. A table ranks the major sheep breeds according to the desired traits. The information found here can help a producer begin to use genetics and heritability as a tool to flock improvement.


  • Carcass muscling
  • Disposition
  • Fecundity
  • Fleece weight
  • Gainability
  • Grazing ability
  • Growth rate
  • Longevity
  • Milking capacity
  • Outseason breeding
  • Sexual maturity


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