A study of the genetic diversity of Sardinian sheep identified a small population of Pecora Nera di Arbus sheep. This population is composed of about 1000 ewes located in the southwest of Sardinia (Medio-Campidano district), mainly in the area surrounding the village of Arbus. The main features of this breed are black fleece, small size, small or absent auricles and a high frequency of horns in both sexes. These ancestral traits suggest that the population escaped the selection process, that was mainly oriented toward milk yield and the white colour of the fleece, for which the predominant white strain of Sardinian sheep was established. Currently, a programme of promoting this new breed is ongoing. It is mainly based on the production of natural black wool for apparel without chemical dyes.