Ewe should see this - rare sheep arrive at Norfolk attraction

One of the new Jacob sheep at Wroxham Barns.

One of the new Jacob sheep at Wroxham Barns. - Credit: Wroxham Barns

Two pregnant ewes from what is believed to be the world's oldest breed of sheep have arrived at a Norfolk attraction.

Wroxham Barns has welcomed a small herd of pregnant sheep from rare and unusual breeds, including two Jacob sheep, which originate from the Middle East and are named after the Old Testament figure.

The new pregnant ewes at Wroxham Barns. 

The new pregnant ewes at Wroxham Barns. - Credit: Wroxham Barns

Ben Marshall, general manager, said the welcome additions to the site's junior farm were expected to give birth around Easter, when they hoped they would be able to open again for Wroxham Barns' annual Lambing Live event. 

Mr Marshall said: "We feel passionately about educating our visitors about animals, and this allows us to expand on that further plus showcase a variety of rare breed sheep, many of which not so long ago were almost extinct.

One of the new Herdwick sheep at Wroxham Barns.

One of the new Herdwick sheep at Wroxham Barns. - Credit: Wroxham Barns

"We’re putting preparations in place ready for re-opening and are currently building our biggest undercover structure ever on junior farm, so our visitors will be able to meet the sheep and lambs in a covered outdoor space with plenty of room for social distancing.”

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Also part of the herd are a pair of Norfolk horns.

Less than 90 years ago there were only 200 of these sheep left, but breeding programmes have steadily helped their recovery. 

One of the new Kerry Hill sheep at Wroxham Barns. 

One of the new Kerry Hill sheep at Wroxham Barns. - Credit: Wroxham Barns

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There are also two Kerry Hill sheep which were once extremely numerous, but were until recently included on a list of endangered rare breeds

Also included are two Herdwick sheep, which have now received protected status after a decade-long campaign. 

The sheep  - some of which are pregnant with single lambs, others with twins - have been settling in for the past few weeks.

One of the new Norfolk horn sheep at Wroxham Barns.

One of the new Norfolk horn sheep at Wroxham Barns. - Credit: Wroxham Barns

The hope is they will refresh bloodlines, educate visitors and help protect the species they are part of. 

This generation of sheep are mainly classified as rare breed, which means they give Wroxham Barns an opportunity to help increase their numbers and educate visitors about their survival.

People will have the chance to see the new arrivals via a live stream over Wroxham Barns' Facebook page on Monday, February 8 from 8.30am.  

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