Fat-tailed sheep in Indonesia; an essential resource for smallholders.

H.M.J. Udo, I.G.S. Budisatria

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13 Citations (Scopus)


This paper discusses the historical development of fat-tailed sheep in Indonesia, the dynamics of production systems, production and reproduction performances under farmers’ conditions, and roles of sheep in livelihoods. In the eighteenth and nineteenth century, fat-tailed sheep from southwest Asia and Africander sheep from South Africa were introduced. Crossing of fat-tailed sheep with the local thin-tailed sheep produced the Javanese fat-tailed sheep. Main motives for the gradual change-over to fat-tailed sheep have been their potential larger body size and the preference of consumers for their meat. Management systems are changing in response to the intensification of land use. The reproductive performances of fat-tailed sheep are good. Households keep four to six animals, housed close to the family quarters. This results in very high levels of faecal bacteria contamination of drinking water sources. Sheep provide a small income, manure, security and help to accumulate capital. Sheep also play a key role in religious festivities. Farmers hardly profit from the increased demand for the feast of sacrifice; animals are sold mainly when the owners have urgent cash needs. Systematic sheep fattening can contribute to higher economic results, if sufficient family labour and crop residues are available
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1411-1418
JournalTropical Animal Health and Production
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • central java
  • goats


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