We are so excited to be participating in the Shave Em to Save Em program through the Livestock Conservancy. This initiative links producers of rare fiber breeds with fiber artists in order to bring attention to the conservation of heritage livestock breeds.
What is a heritage breed? Heritage livestock breeds are those animals that were raised by the early settlers of our lands. They are from all over the world and represent a critical piece of history for their country of origin. These breeds are facing extinction in part due to commercial farming practices which cross breed for specific traits. For instance quick growth for meat production in lambs, low fat content in pigs for lean pork, constant milk production in dairy cattle - you get the idea. Traditional, historic breeds generally possess a different set of essential attributes that were necessary for survival in a more natural setting. These breeds are hardy, mate naturally, are efficient foragers - often doing very well on poor forage, great maternal instincts, easy birthing, long lives, and natural resistance to disease vectors or parasites. Heritage breeds are often smaller in stature than current commercially raised animals. They have unique and amazing genetic traits are represent a key component of the world's biodiversity.
We are proud to participate in the conservation of Black Welsh Mountain Sheep which is a heritage breed and considered 'Threatened' worldwide. Our sheep are an important part of history and critical to our future food security.