The herd (currently around 80) consists of 2 different breeds;
The Drents Heideschaap and the Skudde Schaap.
The Drenthe heath sheep is the oldest sheep breed in Western Europe. Migrants probably brought the breed from France to the Netherlands, where it has been around since 4000 BC, especially in Drenthe. Characteristics of the Drenthe heath sheep are a slender build, a long woolly tail that can reach beyond the heels, stiff and some loose wool, dull hair on the head and legs and a straight nose. All kinds of colors are possible but colorful black and white animals are not recognized.
The breed is divided into the old
and the new
type. The new type originated from crosses with the Schoonebeker heath sheep
and has, among other things, a curved nose and smaller horns. Most contemporary Drenthe heath sheep are of the new type. The Drenthe heath sheep was mainly kept for its manure that was indispensable in arable farming. The long stiff wool is of poor quality and the animal is not very suitable as a meat producer. Many sheep herds became redundant with the invention of fertilizer. Nowadays the Drenthe heath sheep is only kept for historical reasons and for grazing heathland areas and dunes to maintain them.
The Skudde is a small sheep, a ewe is approximately 55 cm high. The Skudde Schaap originates from the Swiss mountains and the Baltic region. They are extremely austere, have a great resistance to diseases and are able to finish lambs without any problems. They come in different colors such as white, camel, blue gray or black, sometimes even colored or drawn.