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Barbados Blackbelly Sheep at The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens. Click to see more.

Barbados Blackbelly Sheep

Ovis aries

Family

Bovidae, the cow and gazelle family.

Conservation Status

Common

Distribution

Worldwide.

Habitat

Extremely versatile they exist in a wide variety of habitats worldwide, ranging from temperate mountain forests to desert conditions. This breed thrive in the hot, humid environments that are challenging for most sheep but also do well in colder climates.

Factoid

The Barbados Blackbelly is a hair sheep breed which means they do not grow wool but have course hair instead. Thus, they do not need to be sheared.

The Barbados Blackbelly is a hair sheep breed which means they do not grow wool but have course hair instead. Thus, they do not need to be sheared.

These sheep evolved on the island of Barbados in the Caribbean.  The breed descends from crosses of African hair sheep and European wooled breeds that were brought to the island beginning in the mid-1600s.

These domestic sheep range in color from light tan to a dark mahogany red, with black breed markings on the face, legs, belly, inguinal region, chin, and chest. The shape of the head is oval to triangular with a typical “roman” nose.  The ears are pointed and when alert stick out from the side of the head parallel to the ground. The eyes are almond shaped. The neck is strong and muscular, clean cut, and without loose folds of skin. The tail is long, and reaches to the top of the hocks. The coat consists of coarse hair that lies flat against the skin. Barbados Blackbelly rams and ewes are polled (they have no horns).

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