The Great Sheep Expedition

by Site Admin on November 2, 2017

The American Romney Breeders Association has participated in the Great Sheep Expedition. Jennifer Gunn and her husband have interviewed the ARBA secretary and received materials produced by the association to include in their research. Pictures, a DNA sample, Roving and Raw Wool samples have also been provided to represent the breed. The Romney breed was stop number five as they started their travels from Ohio, across Canada and down the western U.S. coast.

Welcome to The Great Sheep Expedition! We hope you will join us on our travels around the world in search of the place/region of origin for all the worlds domestic sheep breeds.

On October 4, 2017 my husband and I are going to be setting off on the first leg of The Great Sheep Expedition. This first part of the journey will be to find the place of origin for all 23 domestic sheep breeds native to the United States and the 7 domestic sheep breeds native to Canada.

Once we find the location of origin, we will attempt to find a sheep, representative of its breed, as close to the place/region of origin as possible. We will then photograph the sheep (with permission), interview the shepherd (if willing), obtain both fleece and DNA samples. A photograph and information about the breed will be sent to the Oklahoma State University’s Department of Animal Science where it will be added to their sheep breed database. The fleece sample will be sent to Betty Stikkers in the Netherlands where it will be added to a growing international sheep fleece journal. DNA samples of each breed, retrieved via ear punch, will be sent to the International Sheep Genomics Consortium lab where it will be made available for research projects.

We have also created The Great Sheep Expedition breed passport so everyone can follow along on our journey and get to know all these amazing sheep breeds with us. The passports will be available via the Facebook page soon. We are going to be documenting the journey on our YouTube channel and Facebook. We will be creating other ways for sheep enthusiasts to get involved and learn about not just the sheep breeds but the shepherds who raise them and how each breed contributes to the world. If you have any ideas, please let us know!

We would like to provide information about your breed with our followers. If you would like us to include any particular information about your breed and association, please let us know!

Jennifer Gunn MA,MS
5950 S. Ridge Road
Madison, Ohio 44057
The Great Sheep Expedition Facebook Page

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