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STATUS
New Zealand: Rare
Overseas: Rare
Importation: 1840s

Lincoln Sheep

A Rare Breed of British Origin

Lincoln ewe, 1908
Lincoln ewe, 1908

The Lincoln Longwool is the oldest known British longwool and is believed to be ancestral to all the other British longwool breeds. It is recorded as already existing in an established form by 1749, in the marshy fenlands of Lincoln County. It was the greatest rival of the Leicester, although, as they evolved in neighbouring counties there is little doubt of their close relationship. Certainly there was considerable interbreeding of these two rather similar sheep.

      The Lincoln, arrived in New Zealand in the 1840s, although the main importation was not until twenty years later. Like the Leicester, it was used in the wetter, lower farmland areas where the Merino, the dominant breed at that time, was not suited.

      It was the principal breed to be used with the Merino to develop the Corriedale. The Lincoln Longwool was eventually replaced by the Romney in New Zealand and today it is reduced to a few thousand animals mainly used for crossing to produce the Halfbred.

Lincoln ewes
Lincoln ewes at Taunton Stud, North Canterbury

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   See also:
» Leicester Sheep  
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