Cormo Sheep was
developed in Tasmania by I.K. Downie. Mr. Downie crossed Corriedale Rams
with 1200 carefully selected superfine Saxon Merino Ewes.The original Cormo Pedigree
Cormo is a system of breeding in which
selection is based on scientific measurement of commercially desirable
characteristics. Selection criteria include clean fleece weight, fiber
diameter, growth or body weight, and fertility. Originating in Tasmania,
Australia, the Cormo derives its name from its two parent breeds: Corriedale
and Superfine Saxon Merino.
Cormo sheep were first introduced into the
United States in 1976. They are not being promoted as a show sheep, but rather
as one of economic value. Cormos produce a long stapled, high yielding
fine-wool fleece with a high degree of fiber uniformity. They cross well with
selection criteria included: high, clean fleece weight; fiber
diameter of 17-23; fast body growth rate and a high rate of fertility.
The result- 1/4 Lincoln, 1/4 Australian Merino, and 1/2 superfine Saxon Merino.
considered easy keepers; they are somewhat smaller than many breeds and
therefore require 40% less feed than larger breeds.
They are rugged
animals, able to thrive in the harsh climate of eastern Montana, the humidity
of the East Coast the wetness of the Northwest, and the heat of the Southwest.
Lambing is easy and
multiple births are not uncommon. In an assisted lambing situation
lambing crops can be as high as 150-180%.
instincts, lack of wool blindness, and a high muscle to bone ratio is also
notable in the breed.