One plus one equals….?

or “the fallacy of quantitative prediction when raising Jacob Sheep.”


In a quest for those perfect markings on our sheep, it just seems to make sense that if we want big eye patches, we select a ram and a ewe with big eye patches .. like these two..

In an ideal world the offspring would also get a muzzle patch from Finalist and leg/feet markings from Heather – but certainly the lamb would have nice eye patches….

or maybe not 🙂


Sometimes crossings are more serendipitous, producing more than we had hoped for or expected. Groucho and Lorraine, both with tiny and/or slipped eyepatches…

(remember the .3 MP digicam?)

produced April, of the big eye patches (should have saved a little color for Ivory!):


Groucho was Lorraine’s sire. I did the breeding to see if the the nay-sayers that told me that using a ram with slipped eye patches would soon lead to a flock without eyepatches could be correct. Another daughter of Groucho….

Viva, remains in our flock and continues to produce lambs with correct markings.


Here’s Holly..

Any guesses to what leg markings her parents sported? Give up? OK, I’ll tell you – no leg markings at all and just splashes on the feet.


So, should we ignore markings and just hope for the best? Of course not. Especially not based on my very small data sampling. Continue “breeding the best to the best and hoping for the best” as the adage says. But, be ready to be surprised, maybe disappointed, and sometimes delighted.  It’s part of the fun of raising this unique breed.


About patchworkfibers

Registered Jacob Sheep
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3 Responses to One plus one equals….?

  1. I’d be bored if there were no surprises 🙂

  2. Shannon says:

    So true! It just makes it that much more rewarding when everything comes together. I can’t believe how much your Heather looks like my Aimee! Holly is a lovely girl.

  3. Wrensong Farm says:

    I definitely agree it is the most frustrating and most rewarding adventure…..sheep breeding….especially with breeds like Jacobs..AND Shetlands! It’s good to know that even the most experienced people are surprised by what they get. 🙂 I love them all no matter what. Loved seeing what one + one got with your breedings. Thanks for sharing!!

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