Romanov Sheep - Lambs by the Litter

Discussion in 'Sheep' started by Kirby Greene, MscD, Nov 5, 2004.

  1. Kirby Greene, MscD

    Kirby Greene, MscD the Old Buck

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    There is an interesting new web-site devoted exclusively to the Russian bred of sheep called the Romanov - obviously named after the Imperial Family of the Czars of Russia.

    It is new and looks like it could use some more active contributers to the site. There are several good 'Links" there for further information; but what struck me about the Romanov is the potential for small farms to start raising breeding stock for crossing with commercial flocks of sheep...

    Let's face it - if my memory from the days of Ag classes at the West Central School of Agriculture serve me well, one animal unit is a cow or a horse: OR five pigs or FIVE sheep - now if those five sheep EACH have 3 or 4 or 5 lambs, it easy math to see how each animal unit can be very much more productive than one cow on a small place in the country... At any rate, it's likely worth your while to look in on this site and see for yourself:

    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/romanovesheep

    Kirby
     
  2. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    5 dairy sheep equal one animal unit 7 meat or wool types, and obviously miniture sheep will be higher still. Romanovs do offer an interesting addition to the sheep world, I'd say they were better all round compared to the Finn breed that lambs out litters too. Still they are all pretty small babes, and they all need milk to grow. Seems to me only a very few breed have full 4 quarter milking/feeding ability and neither the Finn nor Romanov are one of them. That said the only litter of Romanovs I've ever seen were at my vets and they were a pretty good looking quint litter.
     

  3. mawalla

    mawalla Well-Known Member

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    The ewe I had that had quintuplets last season was a suffolk/romanov cross. I took two lambs off of her and bottle raised them. One has been kept as a replacement ewe. (Unfortunatly, I lost the ewe in July to reasons unrelated to lambing.) My other ewes that have the romanov sire are also excellent producers.
     
  4. doodles

    doodles Well-Known Member

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    I just sold the last of my reg. Romanov and romanov cross herd of about 90 sheep. They are able to easily produce triplets before there first birthday but the lamb loss is extreme on purebreds. They have 3-4 pound babies that are like a limp cat. They are very lean and are born with a hair coat and no wool. An F1 cross does increase vigor but we had several ewes that were carrying 3 or 4 lambs that developed toxemia. As purebreds they are only marketed as just that-breed stock. They are too slight for meat and the wool has too many guard hairs to be of much worth. They are a tightly flocking breed so that means 1 crazy can move the whole world. They are very flighty and can jump like a deer. I do still have 2 left and had several with very enduring traits BUT they have too many problems to make they a profitable breed. Other breeds can produce the same prolific birthing records and still have nice wool and more meat qualilities. They do however produce pretty good milk. The lambs are much smaller than most breeds so feeding quads is much like twins .
     
  5. Cat

    Cat Well-Known Member

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    I had been using a Romanov ram for quite some time and had a great lamb crop from those ewes who chose to lamb. I had one non-rom. ewe with quads from the romanov buck, and several sets of triplets. I haven't noticed that they are any more flighty than any other sheep, and in fact it is a romanov that I call when kids come about for the tour. I like my crosses because the ewes have nice clean faces. The gentleman that I get my sheep from who has a large scale sheep operation uses the rom X as replacements. I have one of his rams on the place now. It was a nice experience to have quads but I really would rather have twins or singles for the ewe's health. I'm not in this to make my living though, either. I don't think you can beat the appeal of a nice bright white romanov lamb, IMO. They draw the eye much quicker than a wooled lamb does. I love mine!
     
  6. doodles

    doodles Well-Known Member

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    All purebred Romanovs are black and most have white blazes or spots on face or legs. The adult wool that grows thru their hair coat is grey. The F1 cross ewes will be more prolific and their lambs more vigorous but the ram does not control birth numbers in the ewes that he is bred to -only in his daughters. The ewes control the ovulation numbers and the ram only needs to be virile enough to provide sperm to inseminate them.