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2000 Virginia State Fair Youth Sheep Show

Livestock Update, June 2000

Scott Greiner, Extension Animal Specialist, Sheep, Virginia Tech

Some additions and changes to the Youth Sheep Show at the Virginia State Fair have been made for 2000. Again this year, market lambs must be nominated in late July-early August at one of the official sites to be eligible for competition at the State Fair. New this year, is the addition of a commercial ewe lamb class. These commercial ewes will be shown by breed type, and must be nominated in the same manner as market lambs. All market lambs exhibited at the State Fair will be eligible for the Carcass Contest, which rewards exhibitors who have selected fast growing lambs with superior carcass cutability.

The following overviews the primary changes in the Youth Sheep Show effective this year:

Commercial Ewe Lambs (new division) To be eligible for exhibition, market lambs and commercial ewes must have been nominated, weighed, and identified at an official Virginia State Fair site. Nominations will be taken at several sites around the state in late July/early August. Past exhibitors and county extension offices will be notified as to the dates, times and locations nominations will be taken. It is the responsibility of the exhibitor to properly nominate his or her lambs at one of the locations. At the time of nomination lambs will be weighed, and individually identified with an official ear tag and tattoo. Only lambs that have been nominated and properly weighed and identified will be eligible for competition at the Virginia State Fair. Each exhibitor may nominate a total of twelve (12) lambs (wethers and ewes, to be shown as either market lambs or commercial ewes). Each exhibitor may nominate lambs at only one location.

  1. Commercial ewe lambs must have been born on or after January 1 of the current year.

  2. Commercial ewe lambs must be owned, separated, and cared for by the exhibitor on or before the date of nomination.

  3. A maximum of 2 commercial ewe lambs per exhibitor may be shown.

  4. Commercial ewe lambs will be shown by breed type. Breed type will be determined at the time of official weighing by a classification committee. The decisions of the classification committee will be final. Commercial ewes will be divided into the following 3 breed classes as follows:
    1. Black-Face: Generally includes lambs of primarily Suffolk and Hampshire breeding, plus all lambs that do not fit Speckle-Face and/or White-Face classes.
    2. Speckle-Face: Must be a cross with evidence of a percentage white-face and percentage black-face breeding. Mottling and/or some spotting on face and ears, as well as mottling and/or some spotting below knees and stifle joint necessary.
    3. White-Face: Generally includes lambs of primarily white-face breed crosses, including Dorset. Face and ears must be all white, as well as legs all white. Black or brown spots in the skin or wool on the body, or freckles or pigmented areas of black or brown skin are not acceptable.

  5. Commercial ewe lamb breed classes will be divided according to weight. Lambs must weigh a minimum of 90 pounds to show (no maximum weight limit). Re-weighs will not be allowed. Class weight breaks will be made at the discretion of show officials. The three breed champions and reserves will compete for Grand Champion and Reserve Grand Champion Commercial Ewe Lamb honors.

  6. Average daily gain will be calculated on all lambs using nomination weight and show weight. This information will be made available to the judge for use at their discretion.

  7. Lambs exhibited in the commercial ewe lamb division may not be shown in the open or youth purebred breeding sheep division, or in the youth market lamb division.

  8. Commercial ewe lambs must be shorn slick to the skin above the knee and hock joints. Official classification, weight and entry will not be made until lambs are shorn.

Market Lambs (rule changes or additions from 1999)

  1. Market lambs must have been born on or after January 1 of the current year.

  2. A maximum of 4 market lambs per exhibitor may be shown (this includes lambs to be shown in singles and/or pair classes). A maximum of four (4) singles and one (1) pair of market lambs may be shown per exhibitor. Market lambs shown in singles classes may be exhibited in pair class.
Judging Schedule
    Lambs and Wool on Parade (Lead Line and Costume Classes)- Friday, September 29, 6:30 p.m. Market Lamb Showmanship, Breeding Sheep Show, Commercial Ewe Lamb Show, and Breeding Sheep Showmanship- Saturday, September 30, 10 a.m. Market Lamb Show- Sunday, October 1, 10 a.m.

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