The info below is being transferred from our old website, we will have it re-worked soon ? Thanks !



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Need more information on upgrading, grading up, percentages and recordation ? Visit www.katahdins.org Click on KHSI Forms at the top of the page and then click "Registration, Recording, &Upgrading FAQ's" to learn more about how the Katahdin breed registry works. Email us for more info: dautobiacres@yahoo.com



Picking up your sheep A stock trailer works well. A horse trailer (fold down ramp) is a little more difficult unless it has a center gate. If you plan on using a "goat tote" cage in the back of a pickup, you must have some type of bedding (mat, old carpet, straw, hay, etc.) If you are bringing extra large pet carriers/kennels, they must allow the sheep to standup and turn around. We do not load sheep into the passenger compartment of any type vehicle or tie them in the open bed of pickups.



Delivery Depending on the time of year, we may offer delivery. Ask for a quote. Veterinary Inspection and State required Scrapie Info REMEMBER - any animal with a destination outside the State of Texas legally requires a Certificate of Veterinary Inspection and your state may require an import permit number. This is an additional cost to the buyer. If you are an out of state buyer, check with your state's vet office for requirements. The last time we asked, the vet charges $95.00 for a scheduled farm call, $20.00 for the health certificate and $5.00 for each sheep inspected and listed on the certificate. If your state requires specific testing beyond the basic "visual vet inspection" certificate, additional vet charges may apply. Any test that requires the drawing of blood, semen, genetic tissue, is in addition to the basic vet inspection and certificate. You are welcome to call our vet or yours to check on pricing and the length of time to get results.



All breeding age sheep are legally required to have a scrapie premise I.D. ear tag. This tag indicates the sheep/lamb flock of origin for disease tracking purposes. This protects both buyer and seller. Only sheep going directly to slaughter or non-reproductive sheep are exempt.


If you decide to purchase sheep from a "sketchy" situation or at a livestock auction, we recommend you have a vet inspect them if you are new to sheep. This will help you prevent unwanted disease and parasites from being introduced to your place or help you treat for diseases once identified. If you obtain an animal with CL, for example, it is better to know ASAP than months later. The same can be said for hoof rot, foot scald, Orf, pink eye, OPP, Scrapie, Brucellosis, etc. Lots of honest people sell animals on Craigslist and at auctions, however, these places are also dumping grounds for diseased, injured or old animals. Sheep at auctions co-mingle with other species and are held in pens that thousands of animals used over the years. As a buyer, you should obtain the site of origin and name of previous owner, for any livestock you buy at an auction, swap meet or Craigslist. Ask for the farm's Texas Premise I.D. number if the stock has no ear tags. All sheep of breeding age sold at livestock auctions are required to have state scrapie tags.



Free advice - learn to grow grass before you grow livestock and your farming days will be much easier. A pasture rest and rotation plan improves pasture and flock heath. If you have perfect pastures and a great parasite prevention plan, you won't have many issues with your flock. Cross fence and improve pastures ahead of the ruminant ravaging !



A properly raised livestock guardian dog protects your lambs and sheep from predators. Neighbor's dogs are a serious issue in most rural areas - usually more so than coyotes. Even your own pet dogs can chase your sheep to death. You cannot wait and get a livestock guardian dog "later". Livestock guardian dogs are purchased as young pups and raised with your sheep. One of the issues you will have to manage is the playful pup stage - when your puppy plays to rough with lambs and/or sheep. It can be helpful to have two pups from the same litter. It helps to ease the transition to their new home and gives them a buddy with which to rough house. Later you can separate them to protect two areas, such as your lambing ewes and the other pasture with your rams, ram lambs and wethers.



A simple shed design keeps sheep dry and out of the wind during winter. This drastically reduces hay consumption, offers a place for hay, protein tubs and mineral supplements and keeps your flock more content. If you have raised livestock for any length of time, you know what stress can do - and cold, wet livestock are stressed and will have greater management issues. Portable sheds (built off-site and delivered) are good, but be sure to anchor them ! Shipping containers with a roof/awning off one or both sides are popular in rural areas. For small producers, the container makes a great place to store small square bales of hay, feed, etc. Making a roof off the side gives the flock a good dry, wind free area (Winter) and shade (Summer).


Great Pyrenees and other livestock guardian dog breeds (Maremma, Anatolian Shepherd, Komondor, Akbash, Kuvasz, etc.) are necessary for a successful sheep operation. Please remember that other breeds of dogs ( Labs, German shepherds, Border collies), are not livestock guardian dogs ! Work with a breeder that offers livestock guardian dog pups raised with sheep or goats.


Sheep get along well with other livestock and are typically not the aggressor. They will naturally flock with cattle and horses. Co-species grazing with cattle, horses and/or poultry helps with parasite control. The ability to rest a pasture (no grazing) is also critical. The cost of cross fencing and/or electric fencing is well worth it.


Protect round bales of hay with "round-pen" or "portable corral" sections. They work much better than cattle panels and are much less hazardous for adult sheep. Cattle panels work fine for small lambs (with small heads that fit through the small squares). If you purchase "horse quality" high protein hay, sheep can utilize more of it and little goes to waste. Coarse, low protein, cow hay will cost more as you will need to feed grain or protien tubs with it. Sheep, especially pregnant or lactating ewes can only manage to "survive" on cow quality (low protein roughage) hay. Sheep, goats and other small ruminants need better quality hay. If you must feed low quality hay in an emergency, it needs to be supplemented with some form of protein - grain, feed pellets, protein tubs or blocks.


Lambs are from sires and dams that have tested free from ovine progressive pneumonia (OPP), Caseous lymphadenitis (CL) and Johne's disease. Our latest test was 01/03/2020. It is important that the sire/dam be tested vs the lamb - lambs exposed to these diseases rarely test positive due to latency. We have used many generations of RR Katahdin rams, so our lambs are either QR or RR at Codon 171. Genetic testing available for most attributes. Blood work for out of state shipment available, if needed. Vet fees and certificates of health are extra if provided on an individual basis, we do have a whole flock exam certificate available (however this may not satisfy out of state transport requirements for all states. No inspections/certificates of health are required for in state sales).



We have raised Katahdin hair sheep since 1996. We typically have a minimum 200% lamb crop and have an excellent lamb survival rate. Our sheep are mostly grass and forage (hay) fed, so we lamb later in the year than some breeders who rely on a mostly grain fed diet. The ewes need a lot of grass-fed nutrition that last month of pregnancy, so we wait for the Spring flush of lush pasture. We will not lamb ewes in the freezing cold of January and February and have to feed them tons of grain just to "get a jump" on the season. The dead, frozen lambs and stressed out ewes do little to give you any bonus for lambing early, let alone the extra cost of feed ! This type of lambing is done by some breeders for two reasons - 1) They never remove the ram and just have ewes lambing whenever (no flock management) OR you are lambing for the Easter/Passover market when auction feeder lamb prices are the highest - this is typically done by commercial breeders on a large scale, as you need to live close to a good lamb market to haul lambs there and make a profit.


With the proper environment, these sheep flourish. They don't ask for much compared to some livestock. Good shelter, good diet and protection - and they do the rest. There’s an old saying in the cattle industry that “stockmanship trumps genetics” – meaning there is no "wonder" breed that will magically solve all possible production problems and/or neglect.


Whether your looking for the perfect animal for an ag exemption, need meat for your family or just want pasture improvement, hair sheep might work for you. Katahdins are a breed of hair sheep "made" in this country by an enterprising shepherd from Maine. They were originally a composite breed - bred from different varieties of sheep to obtain specific traits needed for a meat sheep that did not need shearing. Heifer Project International, an international livestock development charity, took an interest in Piel’s work and his “improved” hair sheep. Piel accompanied an HPI-sponsored shipment of his sheep to Guatemala in February 1976 and was caught in a devastating earthquake there just after the plane landed—a very stressful experience for him! HPI realized that Katahdins were well-suited to the southern U.S. and built a sizeable flock at their center in Arkansas through the 1980s based on stock from Piel Farm and Jepson’s. Katahdin Hair Sheep International was incorporated in 1985 as a breeders’ association and registry by Piel Farm, Heifer Project, and Donald Williams. The first inspection of animals for the original registry flock book was conducted in 1986 by Stan Musgrave, an animal scientist from Maine familiar with the Piel flock. The first KHSI members were accepted in 1987, and twenty-three breeders agreed to join KHSI and register their Katahdin stock.


An important factor in obtaining breeding stock is what you plan to do with your flock. Are you wanting great tasting meat for your family ? Are you working herding dogs ? Do you just want an ag exemption ? Are you going to show sheep ? Are you using sheep in a co-species grazing program ? Will you sell at the commercial lamb meat auctions or as a private seller at a Farmer's Market? How much time to you want to spend on your flock? How much space do you have for the ewes and a separate ram pen ? Visit www.katahdins.org for more information on this breed and download a wonderful booklet on how to care for hair sheep. The booklet is also available in paper format for $3.00. If your just starting out with Katahdin hair sheep, this booklet will help you separate fact from fiction. More info on hair sheep.