American Cotswold Record Association

The Original Registry Of Purebred Cotswold Sheep

Cotswolds vs. Others

(Background of this page is an actual photo of super-lustrous Cotswold fleece)


About Cotswold Sheep
Where To Get
Breed Standard
Cotswold Origins
How-To Articles
Site Map
Black Cotswold Breed
Official Documents
Bob Gillis: "Mr. Cotswold"
Cotswolds' Unique Benefits Among Longwool Sheep

Cotswolds are the only luster longwool sheep developed in bleak uplands---the ancient Cotswold Hills, where crisp, chill air in winter, and a "fend for yourself" husbandry system harshly dealt with weaklings in the flock.

Bleak Cotswold Hills (here seen in the background of this view looking eastward from Badgeworth in the Tewkesbury district).  Cotswold sheep were kept for many centuries in rugged, unimproved "fend-for-themselves" conditions.

Each Longwool breed has its own unique purposes.  Special attributes of Cotswold sheep, not common in other longwool breeds, are:

  • "Ripeness" of lambs for harvest, despite being cheaply grass-fed or hay-fed.

Cotswolds can be harvested over a long period (up to a year longer than some sheep breeds) without any deterioration in their very mild meat flavor or tenderness.

Cotswolds can be kept in "pasture storage," or on hay (growing steadily but cheaply) and then harvested as needed (no need to rush to market to beat falling autumn prices or the "after-Easter demand fade").

[Note to growers:  After 14 months, Cotswold sheep are called "Tegs" (or Yearlings) and their meat should then be marketed as hard-to-find gourmet "teg mutton" or "yearling mutton"---and no longer called "lamb."]

  • Hardiness is excellent with the Cotswold, even in rainy climes if crude shelter is available and in moderately hot climates if shade and midsummer shearing are provided.

  • "Easy-keeping" is a synonym for the Cotswold breed as a whole.

Cotswolds do well on good grass with little or no grain (though lambs do grow bigger chops with a concentrate supplement where pastures are not first-rate).

Cotswold sheep are built for easy lambing (small heads, narrow flanks), and easy grazing (long necks) in low-rent terrain.

  • Cotswold meat is lightly marbled---just the way gourmet consumers commonly prefer.
  • Cotswold sheep normally have calm, friendly dispositions.
  • Cotswold sheep always tested among the most feed-efficient of all breeds in the days when the university sheep programs used to test them.  See 2 sets of typical tests of those days that included Cotswolds.

How does the Cotswold compare with other Longwool Breeds?

Differences Between Cotswold & Lincoln Sheep

Differences Between Cotswold & Leicester Longwool Sheep

Differences Between Cotswold & Border Leicester Sheep

Differences Between Cotswold & Teeswater Sheep

Differences Between Cotswold & Wensleydale Sheep

Differences Between Cotswold & Romney Sheep

Last Updated: 05/09/2011
2009 by the American Cotswold Record Association
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