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Boutsiko (Orino)    GreekEFABIS Data


International Name

Boutsiko (Orino)

Local Name

Boutsiko (Orino)


Epirus, Arta Prefecture

Breeding females



Trend of population size


Flock book established



Origin history

The Boutsiko, or the Orino of Epirus belongs to the Zackel group of mountain sheep. It is found in the mountains of Epirus and West Macedonia. The total population is 15.000.


Breed description

The breed has been developed from the Vlahiko, Karakachan and Grammoustiano indigenous Greek breeds. It is used for milk and lamb production..
The colouring varies from the total white to black. The white coloured sheep have brown spots on face and feet, with the males usually having big spiral shaped horns.
It is a breed of small size, with wither height between 52 to 55 cm for the females and 55 to 60 cm for the rams. The adult weight ranges from 35 to 45 kg for the ewes and from 45 to 50 kg fro the rams. The animals are very well adapted to the harsh environmental conditions, steep mountain slopes and climate conditions with medium rainfalls and high humidity. The majority of the ewes lamb in November. The fertility is high (>90%), while the prolificacy rate is low (1.1 -1.3). The average milk production is about 100 kg in 180 days of lactation, with fat content about 7-7.5%. The lambs are weaned at the age of 42 days at an average weight of 13. 5 kg. The carcass weight is about 8-9 kg with a very good quality. The milk from the sheep is used for cheese production

Conservation activities

Currently there are no semen samples or embryos conserved for this breed.
During the period of 1990 -2000 the breed was under a milk recording scheme. However, the high cost of recording due to difficulties of reaching the farms resulted in interruption of the programme. The population is decreasing, due to the lack of successors. 


Contact:Dr. Christina Ligda, NAGREF, Agricultural Research Centre of Northern Greece, Dept. Genetic Resources, e-mail: chligda@nagref.gr, chligda@otenet.gr


Action Heritage Sheep AGRI GEN RES 040 receives financial support from the European Commission, Genetic Resources in Agriculture, under European Commission Council Regulation (EC) No 870/2004 AGRI GEN RES 2006 HERITAGE SHEEP