Bighorn Sheep
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Sheep

A sheep is any of member of the eight wooly quadruped species that comprise the genus Ovis, part of the goat antelope subfamily. The domestic sheep is thought to be descended from the wild moufflon of central and southwest Asia. more...

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Male sheep are called rams, females ewes, and young lambs. Members of the genus are highly gregarious bovids (members of the family Bovidae) and ruminants, meaning they chew cud.

Sheep are usually stockier than other bovines, and some have horns which are more more divergent than those of goats. Sheep have scent glands on the face and hind feet. Communication through the scent glands is not well understood but is thought to be important for sexual signaling. Males can smell females which are fertile and ready to mate, and rams mark their territories by rubbing scent on to rocks. They have a four-chambered stomach which play a vital role in digesting, reguritating, and redigesting food. Domestic sheep are important for their wool, milk, and meat (which is called mutton or lamb).

Sheep species

There are at least eight species of sheep:

Hybrids with goats

Although sheep and goats seem similar and can be mated together they belong to different genera. Goats are caprinae and have 60 chromosomes while sheep are ovinae and have 54 chromosomes. At Botswana Ministry of Agriculture, a ram that was kept with a nanny goat impregnated the goat resulting in a live offspring that had 57 chromosomes. This was called "The Toast of Batswana". The hybrid is intermediate between the two parent species in type. It has a coarse outer coat, awoolly inner coat, long goat-like legs and a heavy sheep-like body. Although infertile, the Toast of Batswana was castrated to prevent unwanted sexual behaviour because it continually mounted the sheep and goats sharing its enclosure.

In 1969, Australian farmer Dick Lanyon, who farmed near Melbourne, Australia, kept a billy-goat among his sheep to scare off foxes during the lambing season. In September of the same year, he claimed to have dozens of ‘lambs’ which were sheep-goat hybrids. The goat was locked up while scientists examined the supposed hybrids. As no more was heard of this case, it is believed that the lambs were pure-bred sheep.

There is a long-standing belief in sheep/goat hybrids which is due to the animals' resemblance to each other. Some primitive varieties of sheep may be misidentified as goats. In "Darwinism An Exposition Of The Theory Of Natural Selection With Some Of Its Applications" (1889), Alfred Russel Wallace wrote:

the following statement of Mr. Low: "It has been long known to shepherds, though questioned by naturalists, that the progeny of the cross between the sheep and goat is fertile. Breeds of this mixed race are numerous in the north of Europe." Nothing appears to be known of such hybrids either in Scandinavia or in Italy; but Professor Giglioli of Florence has kindly given me some useful references to works in which they are described. The following extract from his letter is very interesting: "I need not tell you that there being such hybrids is now generally accepted as a fact. Buffon (Supplements, tom. iii. p. 7, 1756) obtained one such hybrid in 1751 and eight in 1752. Sanson (La Culture, vol. vi. p. 372, 1865) mentions a case observed in the Vosges, France. Geoff. St. Hilaire (Hist. Nat. Gén. des reg. org., vol. iii. p. 163) was the first to mention, I believe, that in different parts of South America the ram is more usually crossed with the she-goat than the sheep with the he-goat. The well-known 'pellones' of Chile are produced by the second an third generation of such hybrids (Gay, 'Hist, de Chile,' vol. i. p. 466, Agriculture, 1862). Hybrids bred from goat and sheep are called 'chabin' in French, and 'cabruno' in Spanish. In Chile such hybrids are called 'carneros lanudos'; their breeding inter se appears to be not always successful, and often the original cross has to be recommenced to obtain the proportion of three-eighths of he-goat and five-eighths of sheep, or of three-eighths of ram and five-eighths of she-goat; such being the reputed best hybrids."

Supposedly, most goat-sheep hybrids die as embryos (the famous geep is a chimera, not a hybrid). Hybrid male mammals are often sterile due to a phenomenon called Haldane's Rule. The Haldane phenomena may apply even when the parent species have the same number of chromosomes as in most cat species hybrids. It sometimes does not apply when the species chromosome number is different as in wild horse (chromosome number = 66) and domestic horse (chromosome number = 64) hybrids. Hybrid female fertility tends to decrease with increasing divergence in chromosome similarity between parent species. Presumably, this is due to mismatch problems during meiosis and the resulting production of eggs with unbalanced genetic complements.

Read more at Wikipedia.org


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Hi Mom, Send Sheep: My Life as the Coyote and AfterHi Mom, Send Sheep: My Life as the Coyote and After $3.99 China New Year Commemorative Coin for 2015 (Sheep Year) UncChina New Year Commemorative Coin for 2015 (Sheep Year) Unc $24.50
Disney Store Japan Winnie the Pooh Year of the Sheep KeychainDisney Store Japan Winnie the Pooh Year of the Sheep Keychain $15.99 9 Large Farm Animal Drawing Templates Stencils Pig Cow Horse Duck Dog Sheep Goat9 Large Farm Animal Drawing Templates Stencils Pig Cow Horse Duck Dog Sheep Goat $27.89
Henry Darrow Smiling Sheep The High Chaparral Original 1967 Nbc Tv PhotoHenry Darrow Smiling Sheep The High Chaparral Original 1967 Nbc Tv Photo $24.99 Beautiful Handmade Crocheted Toy Called "Little Sheep In Pajamas" Safe & WashablBeautiful Handmade Crocheted Toy Called "Little Sheep In Pajamas" Safe & Washabl $7.56
New Adult Unisex Kigurumi Pajamas Animal Cosplay Costume Jump Suit Sleepwear HotNew Adult Unisex Kigurumi Pajamas Animal Cosplay Costume Jump Suit Sleepwear Hot $16.99 to $18.99 Natural ice obsidian sheep lucky charm pendantNatural ice obsidian sheep lucky charm pendant $23.77
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6Pcs/Set Laundry Sheep Wool Dryer Balls Laundry Balls & Discs w/cloth Bag6Pcs/Set Laundry Sheep Wool Dryer Balls Laundry Balls & Discs w/cloth Bag $9.98 The Puppet Company Long-Sleeves Black Sheep Hand Puppet NewThe Puppet Company Long-Sleeves Black Sheep Hand Puppet New $28.49
Hareline Icelandic Sheep Hair Dyed Purple Fly Tying MaterialHareline Icelandic Sheep Hair Dyed Purple Fly Tying Material $4.99 Cute Animal Vinyl Sticker Cat Lion Tiger Dog Sheep Panda Rabbit Heart Kids JapanCute Animal Vinyl Sticker Cat Lion Tiger Dog Sheep Panda Rabbit Heart Kids Japan $2.40
New Music Record Hammer Time "Black Sheep" CdNew Music Record Hammer Time "Black Sheep" Cd $18.09 Ant. Dutch Dog Medal German Miniature Pinscher Pincher Marked BegeerAnt. Dutch Dog Medal German Miniature Pinscher Pincher Marked Begeer $14.99
2004 Hallmark Keepsake Ornament Happy Birthday Jesus! Lamb with Cake Mib Sheep2004 Hallmark Keepsake Ornament Happy Birthday Jesus! Lamb with Cake Mib Sheep $8.99 1986 Dept 56 "Le Mouton" black sheep with collar and bell 5"1986 Dept 56 "Le Mouton" black sheep with collar and bell 5" $5.00
Newborn Toddler Infant Babys Boy Girl Kids Bibs Waterproof Saliva Cartoon TowelNewborn Toddler Infant Babys Boy Girl Kids Bibs Waterproof Saliva Cartoon Towel $0.99 to $1.46 Cloud B Sheep Rabbit Baby Blanket Tan Cream Stars Soft Satin Trim Security LoveyCloud B Sheep Rabbit Baby Blanket Tan Cream Stars Soft Satin Trim Security Lovey $16.14 Was: Previous Price $18.99
Leap Frog Fridge Phonics Farm Magnetic Barn Animals Replacement Parts SheepLeap Frog Fridge Phonics Farm Magnetic Barn Animals Replacement Parts Sheep $7.19 Was: Previous Price $8.99 28" Tsa Lock Universal Wheel Yellow Cartoon Sheep Abs+Pc Travel Suitcase Luggage28" Tsa Lock Universal Wheel Yellow Cartoon Sheep Abs+Pc Travel Suitcase Luggage $263.11
1981 Press Photo Eileen Biles, Sherwood Farm-with dead sheep killed by dogs1981 Press Photo Eileen Biles, Sherwood Farm-with dead sheep killed by dogs $15.88 Hareline Icelandic Sheep Hair Dyed Fluorescent Yellow Fly Tying MaterialHareline Icelandic Sheep Hair Dyed Fluorescent Yellow Fly Tying Material $4.99
Free Shipping | CollectA 88009 Standing Lamb / Sheep Toy - New in PackageFree Shipping | CollectA 88009 Standing Lamb / Sheep Toy - New in Package $6.37 man's real sheep leather fashion Military Hat Short Brim hat capman's real sheep leather fashion Military Hat Short Brim hat cap $24.00 Was: Previous Price $32.00
Vintage Kaiser Metal Easter Lamb Sheep Form Chocolate Mold 3D Cast Germany NrVintage Kaiser Metal Easter Lamb Sheep Form Chocolate Mold 3D Cast Germany Nr $24.99 Build A Bear Lamb Sheep Smallfrys Plush Babw Cream Color With Outfit 7" 2011Build A Bear Lamb Sheep Smallfrys Plush Babw Cream Color With Outfit 7" 2011 $19.80 Was: Previous Price $22.50
Boots Michael Kors Winter Tall Boot Charcoal Suede size 10 Med sheep fur linedBoots Michael Kors Winter Tall Boot Charcoal Suede size 10 Med sheep fur lined $119.99 Pearl Jam Why are Sheep Afraid? European Tour T-Shirt Size Xl Made in UsaPearl Jam Why are Sheep Afraid? European Tour T-Shirt Size Xl Made in Usa $29.99
The Bighorn Sheep: Help Save This Endangered Species! (Saving Endanger-ExLibraryThe Bighorn Sheep: Help Save This Endangered Species! (Saving Endanger-ExLibrary $6.37 Tr015 Sheep Keyring Goat Rhinestone Crystal Charm Pendant Key Chain Bag GiftTr015 Sheep Keyring Goat Rhinestone Crystal Charm Pendant Key Chain Bag Gift $0.85
Vintage Resin Shaggy Grey Sheep Farm Puppy Dog Collectible Figurine StatuetteVintage Resin Shaggy Grey Sheep Farm Puppy Dog Collectible Figurine Statuette $11.47 Was: Previous Price $15.29 Chemo Numbered Sheep Flannel Sleep Cap Hospital Hat AlopeciaChemo Numbered Sheep Flannel Sleep Cap Hospital Hat Alopecia $7.00
One Lost SheepOne Lost Sheep $3.99 Bhutan 2015 Wood Female Sheep Year 1v Ss on Fdc pictorial cancellationBhutan 2015 Wood Female Sheep Year 1v Ss on Fdc pictorial cancellation $1.77 Was: Previous Price $1.99
30pcs Beautiful in the shape of the sheep pendant 14x12mm30pcs Beautiful in the shape of the sheep pendant 14x12mm $0.99 Sheep on a Ship (Sandpiper Houghton Mifflin Books)Sheep on a Ship (Sandpiper Houghton Mifflin Books) $3.99
Michael Kors Winter Ankle Boots Size 6Med Suede Sheep Fur Lined LodenMichael Kors Winter Ankle Boots Size 6Med Suede Sheep Fur Lined Loden $119.99 X2 Hd Elastrator Castrator Tail Docking Forcep for Cattle Sheep Goat + 200 BandsX2 Hd Elastrator Castrator Tail Docking Forcep for Cattle Sheep Goat + 200 Bands $39.99
Antique Primitive Metal Hand Held Sheep Mule Roaching Shears - 13" Long RelicAntique Primitive Metal Hand Held Sheep Mule Roaching Shears - 13" Long Relic $4.99 Christmas Nativity Wise Men Carrying Sheep 12" Tall 5" WideChristmas Nativity Wise Men Carrying Sheep 12" Tall 5" Wide $4.99
Black Sheep 11x17 "Black Light" PosterBlack Sheep 11x17 "Black Light" Poster $6.99 6Pcs Home Laundry Sheep Wool Dryer Balls Laundry Balls & Discs w/Cloth Bag New6Pcs Home Laundry Sheep Wool Dryer Balls Laundry Balls & Discs w/Cloth Bag New $9.95
Hareline Icelandic Sheep Hair Dyed Yellow Fly Tying MaterialHareline Icelandic Sheep Hair Dyed Yellow Fly Tying Material $4.99 Auth Fendi 2Jours 2-Way Handbag Shoulder Bag Black/Multicolor Sheep Fur - e26999Auth Fendi 2Jours 2-Way Handbag Shoulder Bag Black/Multicolor Sheep Fur - e26999 $1,458.00 Was: Previous Price $1,620.00
Hareline Icelandic Sheep Hair Dyed Fluorescent Chartreuse Fly Tying MaterialHareline Icelandic Sheep Hair Dyed Fluorescent Chartreuse Fly Tying Material $4.99 Rose Bursik - Zoe's Sheep - Hardcover * Very Good condition *Rose Bursik - Zoe's Sheep - Hardcover * Very Good condition * $20.49
Down on The Farm Animal Sheep Horse Goat Pig Rabbit Robert Kaufman Fabric PanelDown on The Farm Animal Sheep Horse Goat Pig Rabbit Robert Kaufman Fabric Panel $8.00 Bearpaw Emma Tall Suede Mid-Calf Sheep Wool Lined Winter Boots Brown Sz 7-MBearpaw Emma Tall Suede Mid-Calf Sheep Wool Lined Winter Boots Brown Sz 7-M $59.49 Was: Previous Price $69.99
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Prices current as of last update, 06/23/17 9:00pm.

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