List of experts
- Dimitrios Tsiokos, member of the WG In situ conservation
- Katerina Saratsi, member of the WG Ex situ conservation
The Karagouniko sheep
The Karagouniko sheep breed originates from the region of Thessaly ,Greece and is historically linked with the region. Several changes through the years (in the socio-economic context) contributed to the present picture of the Karagouniko sheep farming in the region. Currently, a population of about 5.000 ewes is under milk recording (in the frame of the Rural Development Programme, while several initiatives take place by the most active farmers aiming to enhance the position of this local breed in the region. The breed is appreciated both for its productive characteristics (milk production), which show further potential for improvement, but also for their adaptation characteristics (heat stress, valorization of natural feed resources).
The Katerini cattle breed
The Katerini cattle breed shows the typical traits of the Podolian strain, but with a reduced size: the average withers height is 123 cm for males and 113 for females and the average weight is 375 kg for bulls (with peaks of 400 kg) and 280 kg for cows. The coat is grey, generally darker than in other Podolian breeds, and tends to black in 30% of the heads, and may have reddish hues. The muzzle is edged in white. The calf at birth has a fawn coat, which turns grey around weaning. The adults have lyre-horns, wide dewlap and marked hump in bulls.
The average age of the breeding animals is 40 months for the bulls, and 84 months for the cows, with great longevity: the average productive life is 9 years. The productive maturity is 24 months for males and 20 for females. The age at first calving is on average 34 months (ranging from 20 to 48), with an average calving interval of 450 days. The young bulls are slaughtered at 15-20 months, with a live weight of 200-300 kg, and variable carcass yield, ranging from 40 to 55%. Milk production is just enough to feed the calf, reaching 700 kg in optimal breeding conditions, in a lactation of 5-6 months.
In 2019, there were 770 cows registered in 5 herds.
More information: Katerini cattle breed