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Author Topic: Crossbred rams VS pedigree rams  (Read 5641 times)


  • Joined Oct 2014
Crossbred rams VS pedigree rams
« on: March 16, 2015, 04:34:39 pm »
i just want to know what people opinions on this is, what is peoples personal preference and why?


  • Joined Jul 2013
  • Scottish Borders
    • Facebook
Re: Crossbred rams VS pedigree rams
« Reply #1 on: March 16, 2015, 05:15:10 pm »
I think it entirely depends on what you are aiming to produce.


  • Joined Feb 2014
  • Wild West
Re: Crossbred rams VS pedigree rams
« Reply #2 on: March 16, 2015, 05:48:35 pm »
IMO there is nothing wrong with cross bred rams where they are bred well from quality parents. However, often they are the produce of two Pedigree animals that are sub-standard for some reason hence are cross-bred.

I wonder if due to hybrid vigour in the F1 hybrid the rams then look better than they are.

The other concern I have is they potentially may introduce more variability in terms of performance and looks in the butchers lambs vs. using a pure.   


  • Joined Jul 2013
  • Scottish Borders
    • Facebook
Re: Crossbred rams VS pedigree rams
« Reply #3 on: March 16, 2015, 05:53:43 pm »
I suppose another point is that there are masses of pure bred tups avaialble without them having to be actually pedigree, if that makes sense.


  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
    • Trelay Cohousing Community
Re: Crossbred rams VS pedigree rams
« Reply #4 on: March 16, 2015, 07:11:30 pm »
Yes, pedigree is of no interest to us but we mostly use purebred tups.

Our ewes are crossbreeds - well, mongrels, really, but bred with purpose - so we feel it better to keep the variation on the tup's side down to a minimum.

Having said which, we have previously used and this year are using again a tup which is part Beltex part Texel.  Very similar parents but not identical.

And last year we used a 1/2 Shetland 1/2 mongrel tup lamb on a few smaller first-timers, just to see, and to give them an easy first lambing and because we are very happy to incorporate Shetland characteristics into the commercial flock.

Two of the ewe lambs are perfectly acceptable for our purposes, and have nice fleeces :)

The male lambs were also quite acceptable - but we did get more variation than we would be happy with on a grand scale.

If this year's 100% (pedigree as it happens) Shetland tup leaves good lambs from my fleece sheep, and behaves himself, he may get to tup a few commercials next year ;)   But I doubt if we'll use a mongrel tup on the commercial sheep again, however nice he is himself.

Deliberate crossbred tups of similar breeds do however, remain of interest.  The Beltex/Texel, Texels with a bit of Dutch Texel.  Personally I'd be most interested to try a Beltex/Charollais but BH isn't keen. 

We don't want our lambs any heavier or heavier-boned, so the SufTex would not be of interest to us. 
Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cows (rearing their own calves for beef), pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing


  • Joined Jul 2013
  • Scottish Borders
    • Facebook
Re: Crossbred rams VS pedigree rams
« Reply #5 on: March 16, 2015, 07:23:00 pm »
One absolutely outstanding cross we used for years were tups that were 3/4 texel 1/4 British Milk Sheep.  We used to put them over our draft age cheviots, and keep the females as our 'field sheep' - they were fabulous, milky mothers who generally lambed at about 200%, which was pretty much perfect for field sheep for here as far as we were concerned.  The tups themselves all lived to a ripe old age - the last one went last year, but he was 9 shear.  We only stopped using them because we could no longer source them (my dad was breeding them for us, it was very inconsiderate of him to stop, but the Milk Sheep ewes were just too hard work after my step mum had retired from 'active service' at lambing time).  We are now using Berrichons instead as they seemed the most likely to do the job we need, but haven't lambed any of the female offspring yet (won't until next year) so can't really compare yet.

Marches Farmer

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Herefordshire
Re: Crossbred rams VS pedigree rams
« Reply #6 on: March 16, 2015, 08:12:12 pm »
Co7uld try a Down breed - good carcase and very milky although ours generally scan at around 170%
but they often produce a single at their first lambing, which keeps the score down.


  • Joined Aug 2012
  • Thornbury, Nr Bristol
Re: Crossbred rams VS pedigree rams
« Reply #7 on: March 16, 2015, 08:54:31 pm »
I get a lot of interest in my pure HD x Suffolk or charollais ram lambs for use on a variety of flocks. It surprises me just how far people travelled for the 2014 ram lambs. Several of the buyers have been in contact to say how pleased they are with the lambs from them this year. They have gone to both smallholders and large scale commercial farmers.


  • Joined Jun 2012
  • Basingstoke
Re: Crossbred rams VS pedigree rams
« Reply #8 on: March 16, 2015, 09:11:03 pm »
For me (and many others) It's the product I am after and not the looks of the ram

I am not interested in rams that have been shown or are selected for what they look like, it's performance that matters

what I want is a consistent batch of lambs that look alike, finish off grass and stay well fleshed and produce the product that the market wants to buy and pay me a premium for :)

So at the moment my charmoise and charollais rams produce that, although the charollais does have a little more variation in lamb type that I would like....
Last year I used a crossbred ram and there was too much variation in the lambs, however if the crossbred rams have close similarities in type such as the texel/beltex or beltex/charollais then the lambs may be of a more consistent type


  • Joined Apr 2014
Re: Crossbred rams VS pedigree rams
« Reply #9 on: March 17, 2015, 12:38:00 am »
Got some fancy, pure breed things . . . .

But my main stock tup. . . . chirst only knows whats in him all together. . . .

But I do know what he will produce.


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