Indigenous Sheep Breeds in Nigeria and Their Features

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There are three major classes of Nigeria’s indigenous sheep breeds. They are classified according to their sizes.

1. Large,long-legged, long tail breeds

This class has two breeds: Balami and Uda

Balami Breed

It is the dominant breed of the Northeastern Nigeria around Borno, Yobe States 

Features of Balami Breed Sheep

The breed is characterized by white hairy coat, convex head, long tail, large and droopy ears, and presence of large spiral horn in the male but not in the female.

Balami is a large breed with average adult weight of 45-60kg for male and 35-40kg for females.

Alt: = "photo showing ram of balami sheep breed"
Balami Ram


Uda Breeds

They are also called Fulani or Bali-Bali breeds because they are larger owned by Fulani pastoralists.

Features of Uda  Breed Sheep

Uda breed has two colours (black and white)

Uda is a large breed with a mature weight of 45-55kg for males and 35-45kg for females. Average height at wither is 74.8cm for males while the females height are 71.5 – 83.0cm

Alt: = "photo showing Uda ewe breed sheep eating"
Uda  Sheep Breed


2. Medium size breeds

This class has only one breed, Yankasa.

Yankasa Breed

This breed appears to be the dominant breed across Nigeria as it is many and widely distributed in Nigeria. It normally reared in Northern Nigeria

Features of Yankasa Breeds Sheep

They are medium in size when compared with Balami and Uda which are very large.

Alt: = "photo showing ram of Yankasa sheep breed"
Yankasa Ram


3. Small, short-legged, short-tail breeds

This class has only one breed called West African Dwarf or West African Forest Sheep.

West African Dwarf sheep

This breed is found in the Southern Nigeria with rainforest ecology

Features of West African Dwarf Breed Sheep

The West African Dwarf sheep is try panic tolerant breed

It has a small size, short legs and short tail.

Related article: How to Upgrade Nigeria's Indigenous Beef and Dairy Cattle Breeds






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