Origin & History
DairyMeade NZ is the first recognised Dairy sheep breed in New Zealand.
Their descendants were of the original East Friesian milking genetics brought into Dunedin, New Zealand by Dr Jock Allison in 1992. These East Friesian frozen semen straws were put into big framed Coopworth and Border Leicester, which proved hardy enough for New Zealand conditions.
Careful breeding with East Friesian rams and meticulous culling over the years have resulted in a very highly adapted milking ewe for New Zealand and international conditions. They come in both pure white and black with a white blaze, feet and tail, originally known as Zwartbles which come from the same areas of Germany and the Netherlands. We have re-named these as the “Woolblacks”.
The DairyMeade breed are hardy, highly fertile, big framed and have been bred with a suitable temperament for milking. They do not require housing.
An attractive alert dairy sheep with a placid demeanour.
- Bodyweight and size (Average weight) Ewes 75-85 kgs, Rams 100-120 kgs. (average at withers) Ewes 75 cm, Rams 85 cm.
- Milking Adapts well to milking, up to 250-day lactation. Top ewes producing between 500 – 600 litres per lactation.
- Head and neck are long and balanced with a slightly roman nose. Eyes, large, bright and set well apart. Rams have a muscular head. Backline is strong, easily detectable vertebrae. Withers slightly raised, set well into shoulders.
- Chest moderate in ewes and wide and deep in rams. Rump long broad and strong with prominent pin bones. Tail, well set, thin and free of wool.
- Legs fine boned but strong and hocks well apart. Pasterns short and strong. Hooves sound and well-shaped.
- Ewe Udder must show good capacity and shape. Attached over a wide area. High and wide at rear. Blends smoothly into abdomen. Floor of udder slightly cleft. Soft textured with skin dark pink to tan. Teats of adequate size for ease of milking. Well attached to udder and distinct from udder and well set apart. Pointing down and slightly forward.
- Ram teats should not be attached to the scrotum with well developed testicles and of similar size.
- Fleece thick and springy with good crimp. Does not grow on head, legs or tail as these are covered with hair.
- Colour white or off-white hooves, pink nose. Woolblacks are black with white blaze and legs.
- Lambing, generally unaided multiple births, 180-200%. Tails are left on.
- We leave ewes with their mothers and share milk until lambs reach target weaning weight.
Miles and Janet King
25 Olivers Road,
Phone: (06) 377 5252 or (06) 378 7178