Sheep are the oldest domesticated animals, appreciated not only by our ancestors, but also by modern cattlemen. During the entire period of sheep breeding, several hundred different breeds were bred in the world, most of which appeared during the existence of the USSR.
The territory of the former Soviet Union is the most favorable for the sheep breeding in large numbers, because it was here that sheep could be found in a wide variety of breeds and directions, most of which were of domestic origin, but some still fell into Russia from Europe and Asia. So it was with the Tsigai sheep brought to Russia from Asia Minor in the beginning of the XIX century.
Characteristics of the breed
For sheep of the Tsigai breed, the following features of the body structure, behavior and content are characteristic:
1. The skeleton is strong, the body is well built;
2. The legs are strong, well set, the hooves are strong, they allow the sheep to feel good even in mountainous terrain;
3. The body is compact, resembles a barrel, folds are stripped;
4. The back of the sheep is straight, elongated;
5. The tail is long, the skinny is devoid of hair;
6. The breed is considered semi-fine, has two types of orientation – meat-wool and wool-meat.
The weight of an adult sheep of the Tsigay breed does not exceed 100 kilograms, and the weight of the sheep barely reaches 50.
Sheep of this breed belong to animals with an average degree of fertility, the number of litters in a herd of 100 females is 120-140 pieces.
The breed is considered Meso-wool, nevertheless the sheep have high milk qualities. For one lactation period, lasting for 4 months, the queen gives out 40 kilograms of delicious milk. Some record holders issued up to 100 liters, but this is still a rarity.
The breed is considered very beneficial from the point of view of mass breeding, because it is extremely unpretentious to the norms and diet of feeding. In spring, summer and autumn, sheep feed solely on fodder, needing only a small additional dressing. In winter, sheep eagerly eat dry and juicy foods – chaff, roots and hay. The maintenance of sheep of this breed does not require high expenses, since sheep have been accustomed to the semi-starved content in the semi-desert regions of Asia Minor for centuries, which not only developed an instinct for self-preservation, but also caused a significant reduction in food and water requirements.
Obtaining Sheep Products
Tsigai sheep are bred exclusively for obtaining wool and meat. The wool of rams is long, reaches a length of 14 centimeters, in wools the wool is somewhat shorter, does not exceed 9-11 centimeters in length. The yield of wool is about 60%, when you receive from 4 to 7 kilograms from an adult animal.
The wool is sufficiently resilient and strong, it is distinguished by increased hardness and is therefore an excellent raw material for the production of technical fabrics and the subsequent dressing of knitted garments. Durable beautiful wool allows you to get from it quality sheepskin, used to create fine fur hats and fur coats. Products made from wool of Tsigai sheep are highly valued in the market, one can not buy one such fur coat by far.
Other useful qualities of the breed
Tsigai sheep are early ripening, puberty occurs at the age of 3-4 months. Newborn lambs are characterized by good appetite and accelerated growth, perfectly transferring any weather conditions, including a sharp change of climate. Uteruses of this breed are good mothers, usually in the offspring of 2 or more lambs, the number of queens with one lamb is minimal.
Tsigay sheep breed