I wanted to explain these sheep in a bit more detail because they have some wonderful characteristics.  Information from OK State as I couldn’t put it better.The sheep are small framed, with good legs and a fleece varying in colors. Normally the sheep shed their fleece naturally in early July. All the males of this breed are horned and approximately 10 % of the ewes are horned and the rest are polled. The horns on the females are short and goatish. The males have normally well-developed mouflonlike horns. 

Shorn Old Norwegian courtesty of bagatell on flickr


Old Norwegian Sheep have a well developed flocking instinct. This breed of sheep has a unique pattern of flight (escaping an enemy). This also makes it suitable for use in grazing areas with predators. This flight behavior makes it difficult to handle them with normally trained sheep dogs. The dog will only come back with a few animals because the weak ones escape the flock and hide till the animals in best condition are left with the dog. The same flight pattern will occur on the grazing land where a small group of the best animals will end with the predator and exhaust it. There is normally little, if any loss at all of Old Norwegian Sheep to predators compared to other breeds in the same area. More research is needed to prove it.

What a handsome ram shared by Marthe Marie Meltzer on flickr

The maternal instinct of the Old Norwegian Sheep is very strong. The ewe leaves the flock to give birth from 12 hours to 3 days before the lamb is born and stays alone with the lamb for another 3 to 6 days before returning to the flock. The lambs are strongly defended against enemies if necessary. At the age of 14 days the lambs are developed enough to follow their mothers and to join play-groups of lambs as well. Adult males weigh on average 43 kg (95 lbs) and females 32 kg (70 lbs).


I just want to run my hands thru this ewe's wool picture courtesy of storeknut


The fleece can be rooed as this more primitive breed retains the ability to shed annually. They average around 3pds of fiber with a dual coat that can be separated or spun together. The staple is from 3-5 inches and the micron count is from 30-36.

Here is my Norwegian Top

norwegain top


close-up of norwegian top

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2 Comments on Oh The Fiber – Old Norwegian wool

  1. Beth says:

    They sound like an interesting breed!

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