Another heritage breed of sheep we are proud to raise at Wellspring Farm, Tunis are a medium size sheep with a calm disposition. They have large ears and gorgeous red coloring in the face and legs. Though the fleece appears to be a light brown it actually is a cream color underneath.
Tunis sheep are considered a dual purpose sheep producing a lovely and useful fleece that is fun to spin and suitable for many fiber projects. In addition they are noted for the fine flavor of their meat and crossing other breeds of sheep with a tunis the lambs inherit the improved flavor of the meat.
Tunis are very productive sheep and are feed efficient, requiring less feed than larger breeds to produce marketable lambs. The ewes are excellent moms, with large amounts of milk, a high twinning rate and are very easy to handle. The Tunis can also handle the heat and humidity of the south, and was a common sheep in the south from colonial times.
We have had Tunis on the farm since 2007 and truly enjoy their beauty and personality. My ewes are devoted mothers and the lambs are inquisitive and playful.
Modern Tunis sheep are a combination of Middle-Eastern fat tailed sheep imported from Tunisia, Africa and sheep locally available in America around 1799. This makes the Tunis among the oldest breeds of livestock developed in America. The first known imported pair, a gift from the Bey of Tunis was placed with Judge Richard Peters of Belmont, PA who make rams available and gave away lambs to spread the breed.
During the Civil war the Tunis went nearly extinct because almost all were used for meat. A South Carolina importer and breeder continued to breed the sheep from 1858 to 1877. On June 12, 1896 the American Tunis Sheep Breeders Association was organized to improve and preserve the purity of the Tunis sheep. In August 1929 the National Tunis Sheep Registry was incorporated in New York state.
If you would like more information on Tunis sheep that Wellspring Farm is offering for sale please refer to the "Sheep for Sale" page. Also send us an email letting us know what your interests are and what you are looking for. Sometimes we do not have all animals listed on the "Sheep for Sale" page.
If you would like to learn more about Tunis Sheep and would like to get up close schedule a farm tour or sign up for a "sheep 101" class
We are here to answer your questions.