Even our animals have historical roots.
We are proud to raise heritage breeds on our farm. Our animals have an interesting and rich breed history. Please read the descriptions and contact us if you have any questions about our farm animals.
We are happy to answer your questions. Please send an email for inquiries.
Breed information provided by the Jacob Sheep Breeders Association
Size: The Jacob is a small to medium size breed. Adult ewes range from 80 to 140 pounds. Rams will occasionally obtain weights of 200 pounds.
Color: Coloring is basically white with black or lilac spots randomly distributed on the body. At least 15% of each color must be present.
Horns: Jacob sheep produce 2, 4, or 6 horns in both ewes and rams. Ram horns can reach 30 inches or more.
Fleeces: The fleeces from Jacobs are a delight for handspinners and for the connoisseur of natural color. They are light and open, weighing between 3 and 6 pounds and having a stable length of 4 to 7 inches. They part easily, exposing a soft, medium wool with healthy luster and sheen. The average micron size is 34 and ranges on the Bradford scale fro 48 to 54. Due to the spotting of these animals, the wool can be spun into a complete spectrum from white through gray/lilac to black.
Origin: Jacob Sheep are a very ancient breed that probably originated in Syria some 3000 years ago. Pictorial evidence traces the breed's movement through North Africa, Sicily, Spain, and on to England. Jacob's were imported into the United States for game parks and zoos around the 1900's. Imports fro Britain in the 1950's and '60's enhanced the genetic pool, at the time the breed was dwindling. Preservation efforts have saved what was left of the breed and established a healthy genetic pool for the survival of the Jacob.
Summary: Handsome and hardy, the Jacob is ideal for the small flock owner or the large breeder. They are a small and efficient breed, allowing more sheep per acre. They are easily handled, rarely need Vet care and show a greater resistance to foot-related problems and internal parasites. Ewe lamb easily and the lambs are up and nursing quickly. Carcasses are lean and flavorful, with minimal waste. Tanned hides and horn buttons are additional unique products from these sheep.
The American Livestock Breeders Conservancy (ALBC) has designated this breed as "Threatened."
Romeldale/ CVM Sheep
The Romeldale is a breed of sheep developed by A.T. Spencer. He purchased several New Zealand Romney Rams in 1915 that were brought to the Pan-American exposition in San Francisco. He felt the Romney breed would increase the staple, length, and carcass quality of his Rambouillets. Through many years of selection, the Romeldale breed was developed, with fleece properties of 60-64's, extremely high yield, and uniformity, including carcass cutability superior to other white-face breeds.
During the 1960's, Glen Eidman, a partner of J.K. Sexton, found in his purebred Romeldale flock a multi-colored ewe lamb. Two years later a ram lamb of the same barred pattern was born and when crossed with the ewe, the resulting offspring were of the same color pattern. Through subsequent breeding and further mutants from the Romeldale flock, the CVM Breed was born. These sheep, christened CVMs or California Variegated Mutants, were kept by Eidman who then placed emphasis on spinability of the fleece, twinning, and lambing ease. During the 15 years Mr. Eidman spent developing the breed, not a single replacement ewe or ram was sold so that only the highest quality of genetics were used to replace the nucleus.
In 1982, the flock was totally dispersed, numbering approximately 75 and selling to over a dozen buyers from throughout the state of California. Since then the C.V.M.'s have been kept pure in some flocks, while in others they have been crossed with other sheep breeds.
The CVM face is generally free of wool and covered with soft hair, although sometimes wool is found on the forehead. The body is sturdy and well boned with a long straight back. Rams should appear strongly masculine with ewes conversely feminine and refined. Eyes should be large, clear and alert with ears medium in size. Neck and shoulders should be largely free of skin folds. Legs should be strong, medium in length with pasterns strong and upright. Hooves should be black in color. Sheep should move well with a free and easy
Mature rams weigh from 175 - 200 pounds and are aggressive and virile breeders, able to cover more than the average number of ewes. Ewes weigh from
120 - 150 pounds, are protective, dedicated mothers, prolific and long-lived. Twinning and lambing ease are part of the breed emphasis and if left with
the ram, ewes are known to breed while suckling lambs.
Fleece & Color Patterns
CVM color patterns vary widely, especially in the darkness of body wool. Unlike many sheep, the CVM will not fade with age, but rather darkens from birth to their first year. With the wide variety of color patterns, including dark gray, black, brown, moorit, and spotted, not excluding the barred face badger pattern typical to the original CVMs, a breed description has been difficult
Typical CVM Fleece – fine/soft/crimpy fiber
Fleece should be bright, uniform and dense, of high yielding, long staple, fine wool. Sheep will average about 8 pounds of wool yearly with spinning counts from 60's to 62's quality. 12-month staple length averages 4 - 6 inches. Wool should have a well-defined crimp from base to tip, be pliable to the touch and free from kemp or objectionable fibers.
High quality variegated fine spinning fleeces are in demand, as there are not many of them on the market. Spinners have a tendency to shy away from
the fine count, but once they have handled and spun the wool, they enjoy the quality, softness and ease of spinning. The CVM. fleece is ideal for soft
yarn that is not be scratchy to the skin.
First Breeders of Romeldale/ CVMs in New Jersey
In 2002, Swayze Inn Farm became the first registered breeders (American Romeldale CVM Association, Inc. -ARCA) in New Jersey. Demand for CVM lambs has been so great, that will only be selling a limited the number of Romeldale/CVM lambs this year, to allow us to continue to increase the size of our flock.
Valais Blacknose Sheep introduced in North America
and coming to Swayze Inn Farm
For centuries, Valais Blacknose sheep were found only in Switzerland on the
remote snow-covered peaks of Valais. Although the sheep are believed to have
existed since the 15th century, it became a breed recognized by the Swiss Sheep
Breeding Association in the mid 1960's as the Walliser Schwarznasen or Valais Blacknose
because of its unique markings. Several hundred were exported to the United Kingdom in 2014.
The breed's wool is considered ideal for carpets, bedding and felting.
Currently there are no purebred Valais Blacknose Sheep in the United States. At the present time,
the US Department of Agriculture does not allow the importation of live sheep or embryos
from Europe into this country. It’s only been within the last two years (2016-2017)
that frozen semen has been authorized for importation into the US.
Swayze Inn Farm is a member of the Valais Blacknose Sheep Association of North America.
That organization, like any other Valais Blacknose Sheep registry in the U.S. will utilize a “breeding up”
program that will result in registration of pureblood (at least 93.75% for ewes and 96.88% for rams)
Valais Blacknose Sheep.
Swayze Inn Farm has purchased a group of purebred Scottish Blackface ewes which will be
artificially inseminated with purebred Valais Blacknose semen.
Resulting ewe lambs (F1 lambs – 50% Valais Blacknose) will be artificially inseminated
with imported semen from purebred Valais Blacknose rams.
Resulting ewe lambs (F2 lambs – 75% Valais Blacknose) will in turn be artificially inseminated
with imported semen from purebred Valais Blacknose rams.
Resulting ewe lambs (F3 lambs – 87.5% Valais Blacknose) wlll in turn be artificially inseminated with semen from purebred Valais Blacknose rams. Resulting ewe lambs from this 4th breeding (F4 lambs – 93.75% Valais Blacknose) will be considered “purebred” and registered as such with a Valais Blacknose registry.
Rams must be an F-5 (96.88% Valais Blacknose) to be considered “purebred” and acceptable
for registration with the breed registry.
The Valais Blacknose Sheep Association of North America requires that all animals
submitted for registration (including the initial group of ewes to be artificially inseminated)
must undergo DNA testing. This will assure that F1, F2, F3 and F4 ewe lambs (and resulting
“pureblood” Valais Blacknose lambs, thereafter) meet the appropriate “pureblood” percentages
associated with their breeding.
Why another sheep breed and why the Valais Blacknose? The Valais Blacknose sheep have a
unique look and an unbelievably friendly personality. Acting more like adorable puppies
(rather than sheep), this breed of sheep has a very plaful nature and enjoys interacting with humans.
The breed is relatively rare with a worldwide population of only between 13,000 – 14,000.
Swayze Inn Farm expects to have its first F1 lambs in the spring of 2019; F2 lambs in the winter
of 2020; F3 lambs in the spring of 2021 and (finally) F4 lambs in the winter of 2021.
Along the way to our goal of F4 lambs, we will have some ram lambs that will be available for sale
as wethers. F1, F2 and F3 ewe lambs will be retained to continue to build a flock
of F4 Valais Blacknose sheep.
Valaie Blacknose Sheep have personalities like no other sheep breed that we are aware of.
Acting more like adorable puppies (rather than sheep), this breed of sheep has a playful nature
and enjoys interacting with humans.
Be sure to check back periodically with our website, as we move forward with our Valais Blacknose
breeding program. F1 wethers will be offered on a first-come; first-served basis.