Published online by Cambridge University Press: 22 November 2017
Domestic sheep have a strong social tendency (Dwyer and Lawrence, 1999). Sheep recognise members of their own flock, and social bonds can determine grazing distribution. The distribution and distance between grazing ewes can vary widely depending on availability and quality of vegetation. However it tends to be a characteristic of breed (Sibbald and Hooper, 2003). Hill sheep breeds are known to have a higher flexibility than lowland breeds (Dwyer and Lawrence, 1999) and tend to have less need to be close to other animals in free ranging environments. The aim of this study was to monitor the behaviour and grazing patterns of a traditional upland breed, Scottish Blackface ewes in comparison to a range of other crossbred ewes.
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