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Animal Science and Forages > ASF Blog > Posts > A Leader for the Sheep Industry in the South

Tammy Doughty and her husband Jimmy have a registered Dorper sheep operation just outside of Reform, Alabama on Alabama Hwy 17.  The farm consists of over 140 Ewes and in 2012 the Doughty’s sold 216 lambs.  The Doughty’s market these lambs mostly toward seedstock for both registered and commercial breeders.


            In 2002 Tammy started with 4 Suffolk ewes and quickly grew to 125 Suffolk ewes in 5 short years.  However, Tammy noticed a problem with her flock of sheep.  The Suffolk’s are a breed known for their great growth rate and their wool.  The wool breeds have an extremely difficult time surviving summers in the south.  The heat and humidity in the south is a great environment for the reproduction of internal parasites that have a negative effect on sheep health.  Parasites along with the heat and humidity played a crucial role on the wool breeds of sheep being unable to work in our environment.  Therefore, in 2007 the Suffolk’s were sold.


            In 2006, the Doughty’s started their Dorper flock.  The dorper breed is known for their adaptability in our climate here in the south.  Dorper’s are a breed of sheep that is classified as hair sheep instead of a wool type breed.  Please, refer to “Easy Care” sheep, authored by Lyndi Jury, Animal Science and Forage, Regional Extension Agent on a following page.  Mrs. Doughty has relied heavily on experts at the University of Kentucky Sheep Unit in Lexington, Mississippi State College of Veterinary Medicine in Starkville, Veterinarian’s that are associated with the University of Minnesota and Auburn University by way of the Alabama Cooperative Extension System.  She is not distance challenged when it comes to finding the best information for her needs on the farm. 


The Doughty’s marketing program has changed since they have gone from more of a commercial to a seedstock operation.  Prior to 2010, some of the lambs were sold private treaty “off the farm” with the rest being comingled with other lambs and shipped to the sale barn in New Holland, Pennsylvania.  Now, the seedstock are sold and shipped all over the southeast.  Since 2010, they have sold seedstock into Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, Florida, Mississippi and Alabama.


            On the national level Mrs. Doughty has participated in the M.H. Wyman National Leadership School for the American Lamb Industry in San Angelo, Texas and will do so again in the coming months.   In addition, she is an Associate Director with the National Lamb Feeders Association from 2011 to present.  She is also on the Board of Emerging Entrepreneurs for the American Sheep Industry and is currently serving as the state director for the American Dorper Sheep Breeders Society.


In summation, the Doughty’s have been great to our community as it relates to being ambassadors for agricultural as whole, animal agriculture and the sheep industry.  Patti Presley-Fuller, County Extension Coordinator in Pickens County explained that are   national boards and associations are thankful that Tammy and Jimmy Doughty are in the sheep business.



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