Norfolk Horn Sheep

The Norfolk Horn sheep is a breed of domestic sheep from United Kingdom. It was actually developed on the sandy heathlands of the Breckland area of Norfolk, England.

Although similar black-faced sheep were formerly more widespread in lowland Britain. The breed is also known by some other names such as Norfolk Horned, Old Norfolk, Old Norfolk Horned and Blackface Norfolk Horned.

These animals are mainly found in Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridge, England. And the breed is one of the ancient ‘Heath’ breeds, now being revived in small numbers.

The Norfolk Horn sheep was very popular in Norfolk until the middle 19th century (when improved sheep breeds such as the Leicester and Southdown sheep appeared).

And it was nearly extinct in 1973, but was revived through the efforts of the Rare Breeds Survival Trust at the National Agricultural Center, Stoneleigh and at Aldenham Country Park, Hertfordshire. Read some more information about this sheep breed below.

Norfolk Horn Sheep Characteristics

Norfolk Horn sheep are medium sized animal with beautiful appearance. They have long body and their legs are also long.

Their legs and face are black or dark brown in color, and both are free of wool. Their fleece is white in color with the new born lambs being mottled.

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Both rams and ewes are usually horned, and their horn pattern is an open spiral.

As a medium sized animal, average live body weight of the mature rams is between 90 and 95 kg. And the mature rams on average weight around 70 kg. Photo and info from Wikipedia.


Norfolk Horn sheep is a meat sheep breed. It is raised mainly for meat production.

Special Notes

The Norfolk Horn sheep are hardy animals with lightly built body. They are well adapted to survive on poor forage in cool but dry environments.

In terms of temperament, they are described as ‘flighty’ and is likened to goats in their ability to jump over obstacles such as fencing.

Today the breed is raised mainly for meat production. And along with meat production, the breed is also used for cross breeding.

The Norfolk Horn ewes were mated to the Southdown rams for producing high quality meat-producing lambs (and that cross became established as a separate breed, the Suffolk sheep).

However, review full breed profile of this breed in the following chart.

Breed NameNorfolk Horn
Other NameAlso known by some other names such as Norfolk Horned, Old Norfolk, Old Norfolk Horned and Blackface Norfolk Horned
Breed PurposeMeat
Special NotesVery hardy and strong animals, highly adapted to local climates, lightly built body, can survive on poor forage in cool but dry environments, can be flighty, today raised mainly for meat, also good for cross breeding
Breed SizeMedium
WeightEwes weight around 70 kg, and mature ram’s weight vary from 90 to 95 kg
Climate ToleranceNative climates
Country/Place of OriginUnited Kingdom

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