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    6 Replies Latest reply on Feb 25, 2008 12:18 AM by robinlp8

    How do I  start an American Blackbelly Sheep farm

    robinlp8 Newbie
      I want to start an American Blackbelly Sheep farm. I need capitol and advice on writing a business plan to submit for a loan.
        • Re: How do I  start an American Blackbelly Sheep farm
          LUCKIEST Guide

          Welcome to this web site. SCORE and I can help you write a business plan.Do you know about SCORE. SCORE is FREE.

          Lenders or investors will want to see the Bus Plan.

           

          History

           

          The American Blackbelly sheep is a hair sheep, originally developed by crossbreeding
          programs involving primarily Mouflon and Barbados Blackbelly. Resulting
          hybrids produced poor horn growth that interfered with the animals' faces.
          Repeated back crossing on the Mouflon improved horn growth to the extent
          that the hybrid attracted the attention of trophy hunters. Eventually,
          a strain of exotic looking animals with massive horns evolved and came
          to be referred to as "Corsican" in reference to the origin of
          the Mouflon ancestors. The original cross has subsequently been developed
          into several distinctive breeds of hair sheep. The American Blackbelly
          is a breed of Corsican descent that is readily identifiable by a very well-defined
          coat pattern and is registered by the Barbados Blackbelly Sheep Association
          International. Rams generally display spectacular horns, while ewes generally
          are polled (hornless.) The sheep sport a distinctive hair coat in a range
          of tan to brown to red, with dramatic black markings.

           

          The American Blackbelly is a thrifty, energetic, small- to medium-sized
          sheep with a strong flocking instinct. It is well adapted to a broad range
          of environments, breeding goals, and management styles. On the farm, it is
          desired for its productivity and thriftiness, great prolificacy, and fairly
          low maintenance. Mature ewes generally have two to three or more lambs in
          any season, and depending on management, are capable of three litters every
          year and a half or so. They are very good mothers. Because of their fecundity
          and out-of-season breeding, ewes are suited to an accelerated lambing program.

           

          American Blackbelly sheep will grow more or less winter wool, mostly in
          response to local winter conditions, which is entirely cast in spring/summer
          to reveal a coarse, flat hair coat with distinctive, antelope-like markings.
          It is never docked or sheared.

          Market

           

          In certain parts of the country, the primary focus of many breeders is breeding
          trophy class rams. However, this versatile animal is enjoying growing
          popularity outside game ranching as an important asset to the small farm.
          In addition
          to the continued economic importance of trophy rams, the American Blackbelly
          is adaptable to many management programs and objectives. It is capable
          of uses ranging from biological weed management owing to its foraging
          capabilities, to exotic, exceptionally delicious gourmet lamb. This sheep
          produces a
          lean, fine-grained, and mild meat, highly suited to the production of
          gourmet lamb or the religious holiday small lamb market. It also is popular
          with
          herding dog enthusiasts.

           

          Hope this helps. LUCKIEST

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          • Re: How do I  start an American Blackbelly Sheep farm
            DomainDiva Ranger

            Have you identified customers for the wool?
            • Re: How do I  start an American Blackbelly Sheep farm
              Lighthouse24 Ranger

              There is bound to be at least one national or international breeder's association, and that would be my starting point for information and contacts. I have several American Quarterhorse breeders as clients, and I have seen both the AQHA and many of its member breeders provide a lot of excellent and unselfish guidance to anyone with a sincere interest on how to get started. An existing breeder or association can probably offer the most useful business planning models, advice, and and funding sources.

              I wish you the best! (Isn't the American Blackbelly a "hair" sheep, raised mostly for gourmet meat and grassland/weed management?)
              1 of 1 people found this helpful