vendredi 6 juin 2014
With huge thanks to John Ushant a photo from his private family collection of his great grand mother. This photo was thought to be taken circa 1900 on the island of Ouessant. A tantalising glimpse into the history of the island. As was the tradition the sheep would be moved onto fresh grazing tied in pairs.
Over a hundred years later and photos taken by the lady in the photos' great grandson on the island where he lives still today.
The size type and colour are interesting, still some black is present even after all this time. Is the black of ouessant sheep truly recessive or is there some dominant black in the population?
Gone is any resemblance to the primitive north european short tailed breeds replaced by a commercial faster maturing heavier sheep more appealing to todays meat market.
The Ouessant Sheep originates from the island of Ouessant, part of a tiny archipelago just off the north coast of Finistere, Brittany. The island of terror as it was known to some, was swept by the full force of the atlantic’s weather, the hardy sheep adapted to survive on poor grazing from salty clifftop meadows. It was the women of the island that raised the sheep, renowned for their black wool to weave into cloth known locally as berlinge and their meat with its sweet and delicate taste.
La race "Mouton d'Ouessant" est originaire de l’île d’’Ouessant qui fait parti d’un petit archipel au large du Finistère, Bretagne. L’île de l'épouvante comme c'était connu par certains était balayé par les intempéries de l’atlantique, ces moutons rustiques s'adaptaient à survivre sur les pâturages pauvres des falaises salées. C’était les femmes de l’île qui élevaient les moutons réputés pour leur laine noire à tisser « la berlinge » une étoffe régionale et leur viande avec un goût doux et délicat.