2016 Feature Breed – Corriedale
The Corriedale evolved simultaneously in both Australia and New Zealand in about 1874 by selectively breeding from cross bred progeny of pure Merino and Lincoln sheep. The breed was developed to meet a demand for a dual purpose animal with good meat characteristics and commercial wool production.
Today with over 125 years of line breeding behind it, the Corriedale is sufficiently fixed that hybrid vigour results when it is crossed with any other recognised pure breed.
Breed Identification and Description
The modern Australian Corriedale is a large framed, plain bodied, polled sheep, capable of producing heavy carcases of lamb, hogget or mutton. Ideal for export and domestic markets, Corriedales produce heavy cutting bright fleeces, with good style, length and handle. Mean fibre diameter ranges from 25 to 30 microns in adult sheep to the low 20’s in lambs and hoggets. Yields which vary according to environment are in the 75% range.
Flocks are also in demand for hand spinning.
Corriedales are docile, easy care animals, excellent mothers with high fertility. They adapt to a wide range of climatic conditions, sometimes at very high altitudes, and are known to be “good doers” in poor seasons and have a strong constitution. They are suitable to the vagaries of the changing sheep markets, maintaining above average returns at all times.