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Heritage sheep data base





Bizet    French   EFABIS Data


International Name


Local Name



Massif Central

Breeding females



Trend of population size


Flock book established



Origin – history

The breed was developed between 1830 and 1900 by being crossed first with the Caussenards breed, then with the Southdown and Dishley English breeds. In 1905, Tallavignes, the inspecter general, took the first steps in standardising the population; a standard definition of the breed was then drawn up by a group of breeders.


 Breed description

The breed’s hardiness is suitable for its establishment in harsh areas, the most extreme situation being the Kerguelen Islands. Semi-outdoor management is predominantly used with this breed in the Spring or Autumn, with full housing provided in the Winter and none provided in the Summer. Some flocks also utilize transhumance, the migration up the mountains being facilitated by good walking ability and fleece coverage. The predominant management practice is Spring lambing, with grass-fattening and supplementary feedings, or raising in “sheepfolds” in order to fatten lambs for market.
The Bizet has an ability to breed out of season meaning that a ewe can lamb up to three times in two years. Around 50 % of ewes are pure-bred and also have good milk production, so that the breed is highly valued for crosses with rams for meat production.
The sheep are biscuit and white coloured, with black heads and legs, white nose blazes and white hooves. The male has rolled horns, the female is polled. They have medium fleece coverage, with the legs also covered. The mature rams weigh 75-90kg, and the ewes weigh 50-60kg.

Conservation activities

Currently 13 flocks are registered with UPRA des races ovines des Massifs, with a flock book having been established in 1896; 5,921 ewes are registered. In performance recording there are 16 flocks registered with 4,948 ewes. The average flock size is 366 ewes.


Contact: UPRA Races Ovines des Massifs Route de Thiers site de Marmilhat 63370 Lempdes
                Telephone : 0473927407


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