Willowbank title

Awassi Sheep

Awassi Sheep

Awassi ram Awassi ewe

WILLOWBANK FARM STUD

Awassi udder

The Awassi Stud was founded in 2004, by purchasing the flock established in Timaru by the late Karen and John Garrick. They had bred them since the middle 1990s, keeping accurate breeding records along with quite a high public exposure through the news media. Because of a shortage of outside genetics, this has been run as a closed flock since its inception. They are strong vigorous animals, friendly and quiet to handle. They are highly sought after, and live animals from our stud have been exported to Australia and New Caledonia, with other genetic material to Mexico etc. In New Zealand their addition to milking flocks has resulted in a significant uplift in performance, and with sheep milking on the rise, we see a strong future for this breed. The meat they produce is exceptional, and far surpases most other breeds in flavour and tenderness.

WHAT ARE THEY?

Awassi are a predominant breed in the Middle East. With intensive breeding Israel developed a much improved milking strain. They are considered to be a fat-tailed multi-purpose breed, with pendulous ears and brown faces and necks. The body wool is very coarse.

AWASSI IN NEW ZEALAND

Awassi ewe

Awassi embryos were imported from Israel in 1991, and offspring released from quarantine four years later. They were introduced for the live sheep trade to the Middle East. There are very few in both New Zealand and Australia, where they are used for specialist cheese production. They are highly rated, and extremely difficult to obtain, the majority being in the ownership of one company.

WHY HAVE THEM?

Enquiries to: mike@willowbank.co.nz

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2011