Jacob Sheep
Baby Animals: Heritage Breeds at the Banke partner: 
Hawthorn & Thistle Farmstead, Washington ME

Status: Threatened
Adult Weight: 110 - 160 lbs
Temperament: Docile

Portrayed in many cultures throughout history and art, spotted sheep, later called Jacob sheep, were named for the Biblical story of Jacob. The breed was widespread in England by the mid 1700s. This was partly because the Jacob sheep is picturesque and easy to keep.

Rams (males) weigh 120–180 pounds and ewes (females) weigh 80–120 pounds when fully grown. They have white bodies with colored patches or spots that are usually black but can also be various shades of brown or a lighter color, called lilac. Both male and female Jacob sheep are horned. The breed is polycerate (multi-horned), with most sheep having two or four horns. On occasion, a Jacob sheep can have as many as six horns. 

Jacob sheep produce a medium-weight fleece that is light and open and has a staple length of four to six inches. The quality of the fleece is sought by fiber artisans, who enjoy its color combinations of black, white, or the blend of the two.  For more information about Jacob sheep, visit the Livestock Conservancy

Hawthorn & Thistle Farmstead in Washington ME is a small homesteading farm focused on raising Jacob sheep and fiber arts. They produce and sell beautiful fleece and yarns, knit goods, and beeswax candles. 

Activities: Meet' the little newborn lambs by watching these short videos. 

Enjoy this front-row view of breakfast lambtics! Antics but for lambs.


Can you think of another animal that has spots like Jacob sheep?

Varda (mom) gives her beautiful newborn lamb a bath.

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