Went to the Taos Wool Festival with friend Nancy this weekend. It was a wonderful restful and restorative time for us, as well as being lots of fun.
We admired the Navajo Churro sheep. These are some of my favorite sheep. They have a double fleece - a course outer part and a softer inner coat, although the resulting yarn is usually more on the course side, better for outer garments and rugs. They come in all colors and some even have four horns.
The churro sheep are a well adpated to the SW. They originated from the sheep brought by the early Spanish explorers. They were almost wiped out in the mid 20th century when the government decided that the Navajo should be raising Merino sheep. Only problem with merinos is their soft wool tangles easily in the vegetation of the southwest and then don't do so well eating it either.
Luckily the churro didn't become totally extinct and has had a comeback in the last 30 years.