The Mohaka feral sheep flock is just one of
several of Merino type known to have occurred at various times in Hawkes Bay,
New Zealand. They evolved around the Mohaka River area behind the historic
Tutira sheep station.
Mohaka Sheep are probably of considerable age - feral
Merinos were described from this area as early as the 1880s and Merinos were no
longer being farmed there to any extent by 1900.
In 1976, scientist Tony Whitaker described
the feral Mohaka sheep as comprising several groups which may or may not be
discrete, on or near the banks of the Mohaka River between the Te Hoe and
Waipunga Rivers behind Tutira. There appeared to be fewer than 1000 sheep
spread over an area of 30 000 hectares. Their numbers seemed to be diminishing
due to habitat destruction as the land was being developed for farming.
Mohaka sheep can have either black and
white wool. Several small breeding groups are maintained in captivity by Rare
Content and Photo
Source: New Zealand Rare Breeds (www.rarebreeds.co.nz