- Typically alert, lively, long-legged, large deep bodies, short hair varying from black, brown, white or all combinations of these.
- Wedge shaped tail extends below the hock, stores body fat utilised in hard times, minimal body fat distribution.
- Predominantly horned sheep, though polls do occur mainly in ewes. Rams have spiral horns, ewes' horns smaller.
- Mobile ears to repel insects, small lobes (wattles) can occur under throat. Rams have strong masculine head with pronounced horns, Roman noses, briskets and are more lively and robust than ewes.
- Ewes have finer bodies and appear more delicate and feminine.
- Proven performers and good food converters. In wheatbelt areas they are non-selective grazers, excellent at weed management by rotational grazing reducing herbicide requirements.
- Highly fertile with polyoestrous cycles, reaching sexual maturity as early as six to seven months, Recommended first joining is 10-12 months.
- Capable of producing three lambs in two years. Ewes have five month gestational period, lambs start grazing quickly. Ewes have strong mothering instincts, protective and can cycle again as early as eight weeks after lambing. Twins are not uncommon and are reared easily by mothers. A two percent ram-ewe ratio is typical in wheatbelt areas.
- A high proportion of rams, typically three to six percent, are often used in pastoral country.
Damara first cross (F1) has strong hybrid vigour with Damara's hide colourings, long nose and fat tail. Damara second cross (F2) are more consistently bare-legged, bare-bellied and with less wool. Damara third cross (F3) and Damara fourth cross (F4) resemble purebred Damaras.
F1 ram lambs don't usually require shearing as they would usually be sold before shearing, however,F1 ewes generally require shearing at about 12 months and thereafter as necessary, as well as drenching, back-lining and/or crutching. Pure-bred Damaras, F2s, F3s and F4s, do not require shearing and require minimal maintenance.
Browsers of grass, bush and shrubs. Graze over a large area and eat a wide variety of wheatbelt and pastoral feed including saltbush, stubble and poor quality feed. Strong flocking instinct means they often graze and move towards water within sight of each other and rest as a group.
Lambs can be weaned from 10 weeks, most producers achieving average target liveweight of 35-36 kilograms within four to seven months. Producers recommend drafting lambs off once they reach target weight or sexual maturity, whichever occurs first.
Strong flocking instincts, making movements in large numbers of animals around paddocks easier. Stay together as group reducing likelihood to damage fences.
Damara Live Sheep Trade:
The Middle East is primary target market for live Damara Sheep exports. Includes Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Jordan, Oman, Qatar where buyers pay premium for ram lambs which they use for religious and cultural traditions such as Halal. Strongest demand during religious period of Ramadan and Hajj. Live export demand is generally strong all year round. Producers arrange shipments through local stock agents with transport and delivery to feedlot the grower's responsibility.