Border Leicester Breed Description
Known as the sheep industries’ Great Improver, The Border Leicester sheep is a distinctive, large, white sheep, long in body, well sprung in ribs with well-developed chest and gigot, proud and graceful.
The best description of the Border Leicester sheep can be given from a detailed account of a shearling ram at about 18months old. He will stand about 80-85 cm at the shoulder, measure 100cm from crown to tail. Have a wide level back, well and evenly fleshed and firm under hand, well sprung ribs with a level underline. White wool of even quality, densely planted with a good staple length that should cover the whole body.
The Border Leicester ram’s head should be thoroughly masculine, have a well developed muzzle with wide black nostrils. Eyes should be clear, bold and dark, ears a good length, carried at an alert angle and covered with hair, the crown smooth and clear of wool. The teeth should be regular and meet the pad. The neck, tapering nicely from the head, should be strongly set at the shoulders. The back long, level and well fleshed. Well filled gigots should be carried on legs squarely set under the body, strong with clean flat bones, covered with white hair and free of wool. The feet sound and dark in colour.
If the Border Leicester ram has all these desirable characteristics he will be evenly balanced and able to move freely with style.
A similar description applies to the Border Leicester female, making due allowances for the difference in sex. Liveweight of a mature ram will be in the range of 140-175kgs & a mature ewe 90-120 kgs.
The fleece of Border Leicester rams weighs 6-9kgs, Borderleicester females 4-6kgs with a grade of 48/50 Bradford (29-32 micron).