Breed Standard

This breed standard should be used by all breeders when selecting breeding sheep and by Judges at Shows.


An alert attitude in the head with face and ears of a rich dark brown or black.  Wool cover over the top of the head and around the eyes. Ears a good length and slightly curved backwards.  In rams, a broad masculine head is important. In ewes a more feminine, finer head is appropriate.



Teeth should meet the dental pad so as to make a bite. Not lie in front or too far behind.


NECK, SHOULDERSNeck of strong muscular growth, not too long and not U-shaped and without excessive loose skin. Shoulder blades should sit squarely either side of the spine ie no trough or ridge between the shoulders. They should be broad and flat at the top without being coarse or heavy.

The body should be long and deep with a level top line. The loin and rump should be wide. The gigots deep and well-muscled.



The tail head should be placed high on the rump not lower. On rams the tail should cover the anus; in ewes it should cover the vulva.


LEGS AND FEETLegs should be straight and well set apart, neither too fine nor too thick, set squarely over the feet with moderate hock and pastern angulation. Pasterns should be short and upright. The feet should be healthy and not turn in or out.  In motion, the sheep must be well balanced and have good mobility. Colour similar to the face.

Rams must have two testicles of roughly equal size. They should be firm but springy (like a clenched biceps muscle). At the start of the breeding season the scrotal circumference of ram lambs should be over 30cm and of older rams 35cm



The udder must have no abnormalities, hardness or lumps, the vulva should be straight with both sides present so urine is thrown clear of the legs and body.



White in colour, fine tight texture and not open, long or loose.



Soft, pink and flexible.



Protruding or short lower jaw.

Cud spilling. (Look for green cud around the chin).

Bent front legs. (legs should not bend in or bow out).

Pole legged. (no angle at the hock).

Sickle hocked (too much angle at the hock).

Pasterns too long or sheep down on its pasterns.

Testicles too small or too soft/hard.

Twisted or incomplete vulva leading to urine staining on legs or body.

Snigs (Horn Buds)


Excessive fat. Sheep should be fit for purpose depending on the time of the year/breeding cycle

Black wool; coarse or open wool.

Lack of wool on the face (open faced).

Pale or woolly ears.

White hairs in a patch on the nose in younger animals.


To help make the assessment of your lambs more methodical and objective before registering them, why not try our ‘Check Sheet’ put together by the Education Committee and trialed by Council – HDSBA Pedigree sheep Assessment