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Namaqua Afrikaner
Africa’s Hidden Gem

A big long legged sheep with a hairy covering and a large wide tail was found with the Hottentots when the first white people arrived at the Cape in 1652.

It is accepted that the Namakwa Hottentots from the present Vanrhynsdorp area selected a sub-type from the old Cape wide tailed sheep with a specific color and fat tail. In the nineteenth century these sheep from the Cape were known as the Namakwa sheep.

Description: The Namaqua Afrikaner is a fat tail meat sheep with a soft, shiny, kemp free covering of wool and hair. White fluffy wool with a silky feel is the first covering on the skin with long soft glossy hair in the wool. The body covering is shed during summer. It forms a mat and then shed.

The Namaqua mostly have black or red/brown heads. Crossbred lambs have colored heads with no color on the body. Adult rams and ewes in extensive areas reach 75 and 56 kg. The tail is fat and is very distinctive. It can weigh up to 8-12 kilogram and hang down to below the hocks.

The sheep can tolerate intense sunshine conditions as well as very high and low extremes of temperatures. The Namaqua sheep has a remarkable resistance to most African sheep diseases as well as internal and external parasites.

The flock: Floors Brand farms in the arid North West Cape province. His family obtained a large flock of pure bred Namaqua Afrikaners from the Nama people early in the nineteenth century. Four generations of the Brand family made it there aim to keep the flock pure – probably the largest flock in Africa.

It is not only the remarkable qualities that urge the Brand family to keep this flock pure. In the presence of the Namaqua Afrikaner one feels humble. In their eyes you see the wisdom of Africa of which they have wandered the plains for many generations.