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WHAT ARE SHEEP?

The sheep is an animal which has a thick coat of fleece on its body. Sheep have hoofs that is divided into two toes. They have a gland between their toes. The horns of the ram is usually curved outward. Not all rams have horns. There are hornless breeds too. In some breeds, even the ewes have horns. The average life-span of a sheep is about 7 years.



Some live longer. The sheep should not be confused with the goat. They are different in many ways. Sheep do not have a beard like the billy goat. They also do not have the "goat" odor. There are still wild sheep around. The largest sheep is the wild sheep, Argali. The Argali lives in the Altai Mountains of Siberia and Mongolia. The male can grow up to 4 feet tall at the shoulders and his horns can spiral about 20 inches around.

 













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In the United States, the popular breeds are : Rambouillet, Columbia, Suffolk and Hampshire.

Texas has the most sheep in the United States. Do you know the enemies of the sheep ? The sheep have many natural enemies like the coyotes, the mountain lions, wolves and even the domestic dogs.

Sheep are hardy animals. This means that it can survive in tough climates, like the cold or dry climates and feed on different types of grass. Sheep move around in large groups called flocks. They graze on fresh grass. In the olden days, a shepard and his dog will watch over the flock. However, in modern times, some farms are so big that they have to go on horsebacks and motorcyles to herd them.

The female sheep is called an ewe. The young are called lambs and the male is called the ram.

 

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