Swiss Valais Sheep
Typical markings are: Black nose and head center, black ears, black knees and back of the back legs and black socks. The female also have a black spot on the rear.
We are really pleased to have these at Moorparks Holiday Cottages. Moorparks keep breeding ewes and will occasionally sell rams or wethers. Lambing time is usually around September.
The Cutest sheep in the worldWe decided to keep these after looking after some Valais sheep for friends. Unfortunately, after almost a year those had to go back to their owners. We got very attached to April, May, June and Brenda whilst they were here.
There has been a great deal about the Valais Blacknose in the media recently making them very popular. That means trying to find these Swiss Sheep is not easy! I managed to find two ewes for sale, but I had to drive for over 700 miles to get them! We plan on keeping a small flock of these sheep, but our main flock will always be the Greyface Dartmoors. The Valais and the Dartmoor Greyface sheep are the two friendliest breeds you will come across.
You may spot some of our Swiss Valais Blacknose sheep here on ‘our webcams’
Look at our Youtube channel for some clips of our Swiss Valais and Greyface Dartmoor Sheep.
For more Pictures of Swiss Valais sheepClick here
Where do Swiss Valais Blacknose sheep come from ?
Strangely, the Swiss Valais Blacknose sheep originate in the Valais region of Switzerland. They are raised for meat and wool but i’ve not seen Valais burgers in the UK yet.
What are the breed characteristics and breed points ?These sheep have a black ‘Roman style’ nose/face and eyes with a small white space before meeting black ears. Black hooves, socks with black knees, hocks, and a black tail spot in ewes. The rams do not have the tail spot. Rams will have large circular horns with ewes horns more helical. Long fleece. Docile temperament.
Why keep Swiss Valais Sheep ?
Why wouldn’t you! They look amazing and the lambs are so cute. They are not called ‘The cutest sheep in the world’ for no reason. They are a very friendly breed, easy to handle and the fleece is so soft so great for crafts. These sheep do need a little more care than the usual native breeds, but not much.
Are the Valais Blacknose sheep easy to breed ?We haven’t found much difference. The Valais sheep can lamb all year around so making sure they are not with a ram all the time is a consideration. When born the lambs are slim with very long legs compared to others and the mums are great.
When do you shear these sheep ?Valais Blacknose sheep are typically sheared twice a year. In Switzerland they do this in October and February. It should be taken into account that they usually keep the sheep inside during winter. It would not be desirable for a Valais sheep to have a full fleece during the height of Summer or no fleece in the winter. We usually shear late May and again in September and we do house the Valais Blacknose sheep inside during winter.
What can you use the Swiss Valais fleece/wool for ?The fleece is great for crafts and needle felting. We have had some great felted rugs made from the girls fleece before.
Where can you find Swiss Valais Fleece for sale ?There are lots of Facebook groups around which offer the fleece for sale. You could also contact one of the local breeders found on the society website.
What is Scrapie ?Scrapie is part of a group of diseases known as Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathies and is a fatal brain disease of sheep and goats. Testing can be via blood, semen or tissue samples which contain the animals DNA. These tests indicate susceptibility not if they are infected. ‘Type 1’ is the most resistant and some countries will only accept these if animals are exported.
Where can you find Swiss Valais sheep for sale ?Have a look at Swiss Valais Blacknose sheep for sale Obviously, if you are anywhere near Devon then you can come and say hello and and see if we have any available. We may be able to point you towards others if we don’t have Swiss Valais ewes or wethers for sale. If you are nowhere near Devon, we have two holiday cottages so you have somewhere to stay when you come 😉 You can just send us a message and ask for advice, always willing to help. Only buy from a registered breeder and do your research on them. If they are a breeder then there will be information about them on Facebook, the internet etc. These sheep are expensive and some people WILL try and take advantage. Selling crosses as pure bred or even taking deposits and not having any sheep is not unheard of.
The breed society website has a map of breeders: https://valaisblacknosesociety.co.uk