Karakul Sheep

Basics & a few Scholarly Papers

This one page Karakul Judges Guide-Basic Standard is great for sheep judges and anyone looking for a quick study of Karakul sheep.
Basic recommendations for show ring presentations are at the bottom of the document under NOTES ON SHOWING.

Click here for the full Karakul Breed Standard, or you can access them both on the Registry page.


Sheep Gestation Chart – 147 days (PDF link)

Sheep Gestation Chart based on 147 days,                     add 1 week for Karakul sheep

Print from either the PDF or .png photo

Karakul ewes hold their lambs longer, 152 – 155 days.

The Gestation Chart is 147 days (for ‘regular’ sheep) + 1 week = 154 days


Alliance’s Karakul Sheep Brochure

An Informational Journey in Photographs


Brochure Inside

Brochure Outside


Helpful Tips for Printing: Use best quality paper, 28 lb or 32 lb.

Everyday paper is 20 lb and the vibrant colors will show through, 24 lb is OK.

Printing might be easier from images, JPGs of Brochure inside & out.

For certain PDF print settings—make sure Border is turned off. Front photo needs to be on the edge. To print double-sided automatically, click Flip in Short Edge.

See Books Plus page to order Brochures in quantity.

Ours are printed on heavy 28 to 32 lb paper with a nice texture.


The papers below have been used by Karakul breeders, most recently when discussing details about fat tails and reproductive efficiency.

Dr. Maurice Shelton, research geneticist emeritus at AgriLife Research, San Angelo, Texas, studied Karakuls at that location for 14 years, from 1979 to 1993. The two white papers below were in the exhibitors’ document packet for the 1993 Karakul Gathering in Estes Park, Colorado. Dr. Shelton presented his research for breeders at that event.  

1990 Karakul Sheep, Shelton, Maurice, white paper

1993 Unique Features of Fat-tail Sheep, Shelton, Maurice, white paper

The 1993 paper appears to be a concentration of Dr Shelton’s 1989 article of the same name which appeared in the seminal work Colored Sheep and Wool, Exploring their Beauty and Function (Proceedings of the World Congress on Coloured Sheep USA), edited by Kent Erskine. Despite the identical name they were published/printed for different reasons four years apart; therefore, the wording and content are slightly different, and topic order is changed in the papers.

Topics Fleece and Reproductive Efficiency were removed for breeders at the Karakul Gathering.
The 1989 paper contains information the 1993 breeder version does not.

1989 Unique Features of Fat-tail Sheep, Shelton, Maurice, in Colored Sheep and Wool, Exploring their Beauty and Function. Permission given to post by the author and editor.


Informational four-fold brochure written in 1997 for the Karakul Gathering at Maryland

Karakul – American Sheep written by The Livestock Conservancy

DeVlieg black lamb

Beautiful Persian lamb birth coat. Small tight walnut & pipe curls in a geographic pattern. Photo from the Julia DeVlieg collection, Anakus Karakuls

Page last updated January 2023


Click Home Page here or KARAKUL SHEPHERDS ALLIANCE title at page top

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