The Southdown breed of sheep originated in the South Down (hills) of Sussex County, England. The English farms kept
these sheep for their flavorful meat and fine fleece. In the early 1800s the South Downs were imported to the United
States. With the arrival of refrigeration larger meat carcasses were desired and the smaller sheep were crossed with bigger
sheep to produce a larger animal. They are the South Downs of modern day. Around 1990 small flocks of the original
smaller South Downs were rediscovered and labeled Olde English Babydoll Miniature Sheep to differentiate them from the
larger modern breed.
Currently people raise these docile sheep for their wool, as pets, for grazing orchards and vineyards, or as grass trimmers
in pastures, and for their flavorful meat, The BABYDOLL Southdown breed is perfect for today's smaller acreage farms.
They are one of the oldest known down sheep. Today's breeders believe breed preservation is of utmost importance and
strive to keep this wonderful breed of sheep from forever being lost.
The association was conceptually formed in the winter of 2001 - there was a need to fill the missing link between
sole-proprietor owned associations and one that encourages member participation, gives members the opportunity to
meet, and exchange information for the purpose of making better breeding choices. The association welcomes all
BABYDOLL Southdown's. The association became certified as a non-profit corporation on June 10, 2003. The
protection and promotion of the BABYDOLL Southdown Sheep is at an important phase in its survival; by reason of,
agriculture is moving into a newer phase of ranching and farming and associations are about groups of people, not sole
proprieties. We have seen the shrinking of the ranch and family farm. Large ranches are dividing into smaller tracts of land
and more people are moving from populated cities to the country side. One of the first purchases a small landowner makes
is a farm animal. The miniature livestock have an important place in the new rural lifestyle; in view of that, I would like to
bring your attention to the importance of a livestock association and registry that encourages the membership's
participation. The association is not about feathering one person's ego or pocketbook.
If an association and registry does not come forth with fortitude and direction for the BABYDOLL Southdown, we may
end up with a variety of mixed or unknown genetics, general appearances trending toward small, scrawny and less
muscular carcass. The results is very obvious: farmers and breeders could proceed without direction resulting in no
protection for the breed.
An association should do more then just collect a membership due and registration money for your animal. An association
is a group not a sole proprietor. A livestock association should not be about benefiting an individual, but the good of all
who pay membership dues, and ultimately, for the benefit of the animal. An association should be about sharing information
on raising sheep.
It is, therefore, with great effort on several individuals, exuberance and determination that the North American
BABYDOLL Southdown Sheep Association and Registry incorporated on June 10, 2003 as a non profit corporation. It
seeks no profit for any one individual or group.
The Versatile Sheep: "BABYDOLL" - The modern way of raising sheep.
|NORTH AMERICAN BABYDOLL SOUTHDOWN SHEEP ASSOCIATION AND REGISTRY
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Page Revised 9/17/2012