It seems like just yesterday I put the breeding groups together, but it’s time to start thinking about lambing already! Lambing will begin in April.
We bred 14 ewes this year to 3 rams.
Patchwork Finbar had six ewes – Patchwork Tempo, Patchwork Flair, Moose Mtn. Reina, Patchwork Marabelle, St. Jude’s Duchess, and Patchwork Sashay.
Wiggle Hill Jericho had five ewes – Unzicker Emily, Cold Valley Loretta, Hillside Holly, Canoe Lake Jewel, and Patchwork Jazz
Hillside Tristan had three ewes – Southwind Indigo, Patchwork Lisha, and St. Jude’s Callie.
It can be hard to pick breeding crosses when you are trying to balance all the diverse traits that make Jacob Sheep unique. I don’t want to lose the diversity of the breed in my flock by focusing on one trait.
So – let’s play “why that cross?” Completely from my point of view and not intended as a guideline for anyone else. I breed for what will fit in my flock the best. I have a small flock and I don’t breed to market.
Wiggle Hill Jericho x Hillside Holly
This is one of my most anticipated fleece crosses of the year. Both have long, demi-luster crimped fleeces, with clean colors. Aside from fleece – both have the feet and leg markings I like, but neither have freckled fleeces. Both exhibit correct Jacob structure. Holly is a lilac and Jericho is a lilac carrier. While I don’t breed specifically for lilacs, it’s fun when they show up. Bloodlines played a big part in this cross. A ram lamb from this cross with this diverse mix of bloodlines would be an outcross for almost every ewe in my flock. And a Holly daughter would also be welcome as Holly turns ten this year. Maybe one of each?
Patchwork Finbar x Patchwork Marabelle
This cross is an emphasis on bloodlines. In contrast to the Jericho/Holly cross, which combines unrelated lines, this cross combines related lines. Marabelle and Finbar share a common granddam, my flock matriarch Craft’s Ruby’s Belle. RubyBelle contributed much to our flock in her 15 years with us. In addition to bloodlines, Finbar’s softer, crimpier fleece should work well on Marabelle’s long, more lustrous, less crimped fleece. Both exhibit desirable horns and both have backgrounds (on both sides) of strong ewe horns. Both are the finer more primitive type that I prefer. Finbar is a lilac and Marabelle is a lilac carrier.
Time flies – so time to go! Back soon (as time allows).