World of Wool
Other animals grow fleecethat can be spun, but wool is neerly
synonymous with sheep. Noted authority Michael L. Ryder suggests
there are a thousand breeds; more than a billion sheep graze
world pastures. Most wool is produced in the Southern Hemisphere
and shipped to the Northern Hemisphere. Australia leads in the
world production, Japan in imports. The merino supplies a least
a third in the world's wool. Spain so valued merinos that it
once deemed their export a capitol offense. The breed's fiber
is so fine that five strands equal the width of a human hair.
Breeds like the Romney and Lincoln produce a coarse fiberused
in carpets. Wool from other animals, such as mohair-producing
Angora goats and rabbits and South American cameloids- like alpaca
and vicuna- are known as specialty fibers.
(Jim said he liked traveling to lots of farms accross the
mid-west to get the see of all these sheep.)