Image from www.raisingsheep.net
History: The Suffolk sheep became a recognized breed in 1810 from crossing Southdown rams with old-style Norfolk Horn ewes per the Fleece & Fiber Sourcebook. The first documented import to North America was made in 1888.
Size: Ram: 275-400 pounds Ewe: 200-300 pounds
Fleece Weight: 4-8 pounds (1.8-3.6 kg)
Staple Length: 2-3.5 inches (5-7 cm)
Fiber Diameters: 46s to 58s by the Bradford count, 26-33 micron count.
Coloring: White. There may be some black fibers, as these sheep have colored faces. Any off-color fibers lower the commercial value of the wool per the Fleece & Fiber Sourcebook.
Spinning: Keep the drafting light and moderate twist to preserve loftiness.
Note: My 1 oz. sample from Woolgatherings is a grey Suffolk. There is information in the Fleece & Fiber Sourcebook that states there is a processed fiber sold as “grey Suffolk” that demonstrates few of the qualities that characterize Suffolk wool. It goes on to say: Spinners who use it should not make assumptions about Suffolk based on their experiences with this fiber.
Good to know. I will need to find some “true” Suffolk for sampling.
Off to read an old post by Deb Robson regarding this…I’m sure to share.
Until next time…