Manx Loughton Ancient Conservation Breed

Manx loughton wool swatch

11th Century

Descended from a primitive mountain breed thought to of been on the Isle of Man for more than a thousand years. The word Loughton is Manx for “mouse brown”. 4 horned or 6, its grazing habits create a favourable habitat for the endangered Red-billed Chough.

Fleece Details

Fleece Weights: 1.5-2 KG
Microns: 27-33
Staple Length: 6-12cm

Breed History

The Manx Loaghtan is an ancient sheep breed that originated on the Isle of Man, which is located in the Irish Sea between Great Britain and Ireland. The name “Loaghtan” comes from the Manx word for “mouse-brown,” referring to the sheep’s characteristic coloring.

Historically, the Manx Loaghtan sheep played a crucial role in the Isle of Man’s economy and provided sustenance for the island’s population. They are known for their ability to thrive in harsh upland environments and graze on coarse vegetation. The breed is well adapted to the rugged terrain and variable climate of the Isle of Man.

Manx Loaghtan sheep are medium-sized and have a distinctive appearance. They have four or occasionally six horns, with both males and females typically having horns. The wool of the Manx Loaghtan is prized for its quality and color. It is a dark, rich brown, often described as “moorit.” The wool can be used for a variety of purposes, including textiles and crafts.

Due to changes in agriculture and farming practices, the Manx Loaghtan breed faced a significant decline in population during the 20th century, and by the 1970s, it was considered critically endangered. However, conservation efforts have been successful in preserving the breed, and its numbers have increased since then.

The Manx Loaghtan is now classified as a rare breed but is no longer critically endangered. Efforts to protect and promote the breed continue, and it is recognized as an important part of the cultural and natural heritage of the Isle of Man and the United Kingdom.

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