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Sfakia   GreekEFABIS Data


International Name


Local Name



Island of Crete, in Apokoronos and, Sfakia, (Chania Prefecture)

Breeding females



Trend of population size


Flock book established



Origin history

The Sfakia is an indigenous breed, belong to the mountain Zackel breed and is located in Crete, in Apokoronos and Sfakia (in Chania Prefecture).


 Breed description

The animals are white coloured with dark spots around the eyes and on the feet. A very small percentage of the animals are black. The males have two spiralled horns. The mature weight is about 40 kg for the females and 60 for the males. The lambings mainly occur during the months of November and December. The prolificacy rate is about 1.3. The average milk production is about 150 kg. The lambs are weaned at the age of 2 months at a weight of 13.5 kg.
Feeding is based in the mountainous and semi mountainous pastures. A big part of the flocks is housed in traditional stoned installations. The breed is adapted in mountain areas with low quality pastures and extreme xyrothermic conditions.

Conservation activities

The number of breeding ewes in milk recording schemes is 5.750. Milk recording is applied by the Farmers Association and is supervised by the Genetic Improvement Centre of Athens of the Ministry of Rural Development and Food. Currently there are no semen samples or embryos conserved for this breed.


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