Breed of sheep Romanovskaya: appearance, advantages and disadvantages, care
Among the many breeds of sheep there are famous, bred many years ago and are still popular. One of them is Romanovskaya. This is a breed of fur coat, bred in Russia in the XVIII century. Read about the pedigree characteristics, advantages, how to breed and keep these sheep in the review.
Romanovsk sheep are a breed of coarse-haired direction, grown in Yaroslavl province from the XVIII century. Northern short-tailed sheep, which laid the foundation for the breed, had thick hair and were adapted to live in the harsh conditions of the northern regions. Probably, the Romanovskaya breed became a cross between several representatives of now unknown breeds. In subsequent generations, peasants developed pedigree characters, consciously selecting among the sheep those who possessed a thicker and more voluminous fur coat.
Did you know? Sheeps — one of the first domesticated animals. Archaeological excavations in Iran have discovered a statuette of a sheep with wool, which suggests that the selection of woolly animals began more than 6000 years ago.
Animals are perfectly adapted to temperate and cold climates. They are very energetic and can reproduce even under moderate grazing conditions, which makes them suitable for cultivation in most regions.
Video: Features of the Romanovskaya breed of sheep
Sheep are highly resistant to most sheep diseases., including to internal parasites. They feed on grass and shrubs, 60–64% of the diet ruminants receive on pastures. The rest can be supplemented with hay and fortified feed.
Appearance and description
Romanovsk sheep has a proportional weight and excellent coat. In Soviet times, it was one of the most popular breeds. At birth, all Romanov’s lambs are black with the possible presence of white spots on their heads. An adult animal is overgrown with milky color. Only legs and head remain black. Within the breed, they can be horned or hornless.
The Romanov sheep is characterized by a strong, compact physique, long thin legs, a barrel-shaped body with a dense wool coat. The breed is distinguished by a strong developed skeleton, a rounded body and an excellent skin-wool coat. The breed standard was issued back in 1908.
Then he provided for the following parameters:
- height at the withers - 70 cm;
- strong skeleton;
- powerful muscles;
- wide sternum;
- straight straight back;
- saggy sacrum;
- strong legs.
Did you know? One sign of early domestication is the fact that sheep — the only livestock species that cannot return to the wild.
Modern representatives of the breed have the following characteristics:
- weight: ram - up to 100 kg; sheep - 55 kg, maximum - up to 70 kg;
- both can be horned or hornless (hornless);
- head: oblong with erect ears;
- trunk: barrel-shaped, with a straight back and lowered line of the sacrum;
- short tail;
- mane: occurs from 8 months, consists of the outer pile and clearly stands out from the rest of the coat;
- lambs wool is considered the most valuable and contains a lot of fluff. It grows into an awn and forms pigtails.
The coat of adults is considered very dense. On 1 cm² it contains up to 2800 fibers. The thickness of the spine is 90 microns.They are sheared 3 times a year, receiving from one adult ram up to 3.5 kg of wool, and from one female - up to 1.8 kg per haircut. The mothers give a good offspring, bringing 2-3 lamb a year. The breed is used not only for wool, but also can give a good meat yield - up to 30–35 kg per carcass.
Romanov sheep is characterized by a high fertility rate - 2.3%, a strong maternal instinct and the ability to develop well in adverse conditions. Young individuals are capable of breeding by 8 months of age. Adult animals are capable of reproducing year-round. Females can bring offspring 2 times a year. More often 2 lamb are born, less often - 3. Females have enough milk to feed offspring.
The purpose of the breed is the production of high-quality sheepskin. She was considered one of the best not only in the USSR, but also in the world. The most valuable and now considered the wool of lambs 6-8 months. It contains a lot of fluff.
Today, the demand for fleece is falling. Synthetic materials and things with alpaca wool are in great demand. In connection with this, farmers are interested in meat characteristics. For coarse-haired sheep, meat and meat-greasy bias is possible. So, the Romanovskys have a meat bias. Their meat has a relatively small amount of fat (for example, the Edilbaevskaya fat tail breed belongs to the meat-fat direction).
Did you know? In 2004, he was lost and lived for 6 years in the cave of the Shrek Merino sheep in New Zealand. When he was caught and sheared, there was enough wool to sew 20 men's suits.
Advantages and disadvantages of the breed
- Advantages of the breed:
- high-quality sheepskin - lightweight, durable, with heat-shielding properties;
- a large amount of wool - from 6 to 9 kg per year from one individual;
- unpretentiousness in the content;
- good adaptation to any weather conditions;
- high productivity.
The main disadvantage of coarse sheep today is low demand for the main product - sheepskin. This forces farmers to seek new markets or to breed improved meat properties in the breed.
The average life span of sheep is about 6–10 years. When creating optimal conditions for life, they can live longer.
Conditions of detention
Animals can live in a stable with equipped stalls. The floor must be wooden and non-slippery to avoid injury. The building should not have drafts, but ventilation is mandatory. For bedding, clean and dry straw is used. Change it daily as it gets dirty. If disinfection is necessary, slaked lime will help eliminate moisture and prevent the spread of bacteria.
In the summer, grazing animals will need a fenced space with a canopy, where they can be collected for the night. The height of the fence is about 2 m. The openings in the fence should be narrower than the head of the sheep in order to exclude injuries and jamming.
Important! It is not recommended to graze animals after rain. From the soil, earthworms, which can be carriers of helminths, rise to the surface.
Feeding and haircut
Nutritional needs include the need for clean and fresh water. Most of the time animals spend on grazing.The water source must be installed at an elevation so that it is convenient for them to drink without splashing.
Be sure to provide access to salt. This is an integral part of digestion. Secure the salt feeder under the canopy so that it does not get caught in the rain. Position the fortified feed feeder in the same place.
Important! Make sure that fortified foods do not contain copper - it is toxic to sheep.
Sheep add up to 500 g of a mixture of different hay per day. It is advisable to use clover and meadow grass, mown in May. Cereal feed is not recommended in the diet, as animals will quickly gain weight. Older individuals are more likely to gain weight regardless of their diet.
Haircuts occur 3 times a year. For this, purchase an electric scissors for haircuts and a machine for fixing the animal. Sheep are very restless, and in order not to injure them when shearing, you need to hold them tightly. It is convenient to carry out a haircut with an assistant. When working with a cutting tool, you need to be extremely careful so as not to cut off the nipples of the animal along with the hair.
Lambs need to trim their hooves every six to ten weeks. This is very important, since neglect of the procedure can lead to lameness and infection. Hoof trimmers can be bought at a specialty store.
If there is a large herd, it is convenient to use ear tags and mark in the journal the main stages in the life of a sheep: pregnancy, illness, injury, vaccination. A herd of enterotoxemia and tetanus is vaccinated according to the schedule established by the veterinarian.
Sheep breeding occurs in a reproductive way, as in other domestic herd animals, of a similar physiology. A flock of sheep is usually crossed with one sheep. Crossing and breeding in the Romanovskaya breed lasts all year round, but it is better to do this in the fall. Then the sheep will be kitten by spring.
Important! During the rut, even calm sheep can become aggressive, so never turn your back on him.
It is difficult to determine the pregnancy of a female without ultrasound. Visually, it is noticeable only 6 weeks before delivery. Only a veterinarian can determine its presence. Pregnancy lasts 5 months. A few days before birth, the sheep become restless, often lie down. The udder is filled with milk, and the vulva swells.
Fights can last from 1 to several hours. The physical health of the female affects both the number of offspring and its health. In one lamb, there are often 2 lamb. Many sheep give birth directly to the pasture, without assistance. Most births go well.
But sometimes a lamb walks with both legs and head forward or it is too big. Then you need the help of a veterinarian. After the baby is born, the sheep begins to lick it. Thus, it cleanses the nose and mouth of mucus and dries it. In a lamb, the umbilical cord is cut to 2.5 cm and the place is greased with iodine to prevent infection. A healthy baby will try to get to his feet almost immediately.
Under normal conditions, the sheep feeds the baby with colostrum during the first hours after birth. Then she feeds him with milk. If the lamb does not eat, use a gastric tube for forced feeding to save his life.Odor plays a big role in sheep recognizing each other. Violation of the smell of a newborn lamb when washing or over-processing can lead to the mother rejecting it. And vice versa, the smell of a lamb will help in education, if for any reason the baby needs to be fed through the nipple.
A healthy lamb should have a dry, small navel, vigorous movements, and clear, bright eyes. If this is a male, they put on a rubber ring, otherwise he may become aggressive upon reaching maturity. Make sure both testicles are lowered before releasing the ring.In order for the lambs not to die in the first months of life, they must be immune. If the mother of the lamb was not vaccinated a month before birth, the lamb is vaccinated one week after them. If a sheep is vaccinated, he has immunity, and vaccination occurs at 3 months of age. The vaccine prevents the development of diseases of the kidneys, tetanus, malignant edema and infectious diseases. The vaccination is repeated after a month, and then at 1 year.
Sheep breeding of this breed is engaged in most regions of Russia and Belarus. The main breed line is located in Borisoglebsky district, in the Atis breeding farm, as well as in a number of farms in the Tugaevsky district of the Yaroslavl region and the Palekh district in the Ivanovo region.
If you intend to breed, it should be borne in mind that sheep with a low birth rate and weak should be rejected from breeding. The remaining must comply with the requirements of the standard. Since the breed is grown for the sake of wool, pay attention to the wool testing schemes and performance requirements for animals. This will help optimize the herd and improve its productive performance.