They might be an unusual species but for farmer Robert Grieve the striking Dorset Horn sheep is a familiar sight.
The rare species has been in his farm for generations - since his great-grandfather began farming them in 1931.
The 58 year old says he keeps breeding the sheep for "the heritage and the tradition".
"You sort of fall in love with them after a while," Mr Grieve told The Courier.
The six Dorset Horns he has brought along to the Ballarat Show were always going to get some recognition from judges - being the only exhibit of the breed at the show.
You sort of fall in love with them after a whileRobert Grieve, farmer
The Grieves, who are based in the Clarkes Hill area north-east of Ballarat, keep around 55 Dorset Horns, along with 80 Poll Dorsets and a much larger flock of commercial ewes.
One of the oldest British breeds, the Dorset Horn is thought to have been introduced to Australia at the end of the 19th century.
The rams are known for their prominent horns.
With less than 1,000 of them in Australia, they are now listed as vulnerable by the Rare Breeds Trust of Australia. According to Heritage Sheep Australia, there were 19 registered flocks in the entire country last year.
- The Dorset Horns will be in the Sheep Show and Display section of the Main Pavilion at the Ballarat Show throughout Saturday and Sunday (November 9/10).
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