News

November 8, 2015

For Sale

We have 12 Dorper Ewes with 18 lambs at foot, some by Artificial Insemination to top Kaya sires. Read more

January 21, 2015

Facebook

For the latest news come see us on Facebook! https://www.facebook.com/BrocburnDorpers Read more

November 27, 2012

Deloraine Show 2012

Deloraine Show is probably our favourite show of the year and the 2012 show was a lot of fun once again and great weather. Read more

October 25, 2012

Royal Hobart Show 2012

Our second Hobart Royal Show was once again a lot of fun. Read more

October 21, 2012

Longford Show 2012

A long day at Longford show yesterday but well worthwhile. Read more

More News...

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Jim & Joanna Lyall
t 03 6436 2226
m 0408 375 138
e jim@brocburndorpers.com

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Breed

Following extensive crossbreeding experiments in the 1930’s with local indigenous sheep breeds and the many imported British and European sheep breeds, the Dorper was developed as a specialist meat breed in South Africa around 1942. Two colour phases of this breed have been developed from initial crosses between Blackhead Persian ewes and Dorset Horn rams, with the black headed type referred to as the Dorper and White Dorper denoting the all white type. Colour preference is a matter of personal choice.

Figure 1. Dorper ewes showing variation in shedding

Figure 1. Dorper ewes showing variation in shedding

The Dorper is an easy care, low labour input breed that does not require shearing as its short winter covering of wool and hair is shed annually in the same manner as cattle or goats. However there is a wide variation in the degree of shedding, with some Dorpers shedding completely and others retaining fibre on the back (Figure1).

 This trait appears to be highly heritable and using a good shedding ram will typically improve shedding ability in his offspring.

The Dorper has a reputation for its adaptability to harsh conditions from the hottest and driest to the wettest and coldest environments, and is the most numerous meat sheep breed in South Africa. The Dorper is becoming increasingly popular as a specialist meat producing sheep in Australia, as well as the Middle East, China, Canada, South America, Mexico and the United States and is forecast by many international authorities to become a major sheep breed in low management input systems throughout the world.

Characteristics of the breed include an unrestricted breeding season with high ram fertility and vigour, excellent milk production and good mothering ability in the ewes and rapid growth rates in lambs with excellent carcass conformation. Taste tests confirm the tenderness and superior taste of Dorper meat (pdf, 373KB)

 Dorpers are non-selective grazers with excellent feed conversion efficiency which allows lambs to finish well on poor quality feed. Dorpers have a thicker skin than wool breeds which, as well as being more resistant to grass seed penetration, makes their skins highly prized as apparel leather.

So, some reasons to breed Dorpers:

Which all adds up to more $’s per Hectare!