The Bluefaced Leicester evolved near Hexham in the county of Northumberland, England during the early 1900's. They are descendants of Robert Bakewell’s improved Dishley Leicester. The breed originated from Border Leicester individuals selected for the blue face (white hairs on black skin) and finer fleeces. It was was developed as a sire of high quality crossbred ewes.
The crossbred progeny of the Bluefaced Leicester is the Mule, the ewe famous throughout the U.K. as the best commercial breeding ewe on the market. Bluefaced Leicesters were imported to Canada in the 1970's where they eventually made their way to the United States. Frozen semen from the United Kingdom is being used to expand the genetic base of the breed in the U.S. and Canada.
Breed categories: long wool, dual-purpose