Established in 2007, the ATSA is dedicated to the preservation and promotion of the American Teeswater Sheep.
The journey to develop the American Teeswater began in 1997, when the first semen from the ram Lakeland Majestic was imported. With that initial importation, breeders began the process of upgrading by breeding successive generations of higher percentage animals with Artificial Insemination. This work has continued through today, producing an active breeding population of more than 370 sheep currently registered with the ATSA.
It wasnt until almost 10 years had elapsed from those initial breedings, that the ATSA was founded. As a result, eary programs utilized a number of foundation breeds that are not recognized under the current Association upgrading guidelines. Additionally there was no restriction on the color of foundation animals used, which resulted in the development of the American Colored Teeswater. Colored variants are not recognized by the UK Teeswater Association Standard of Type and are considered a significant fault by the UK Society, that will result in removal of the animals from the UK Society Flock Books. This situation presented the ATSA with a dilemma that has perpetuated until today.
In order to promote the development of the Teeswater in accordance with the UK type, which would result in removal of any animal known to carry colored genetics from the flock book, while still allowing opportunities for breeders to pursue their individual breeding goals - including the production of colored animals; the ATSA maintains separate registry categories for white, colored and recorded sheep. Color factors are tracked with pedigree information by the Registrar, as well as foundation lineage. A foundation registry has also been established to allow improvement through crossbreeding of foundation animals that would otherwise not be eligible for registration in the purbred foundation registries.
The Association has undertaken several new programs to provide breeders with greater flexibility to expand and improve their breeding programs while still preserving the integrity of the breed and the Registry.
The amazing journey from foundation animal to high percentage American Teeswater is a testament to the dedication of the breeders who love these sheep so much. Much has changed since the founding of the ATSA, and as we continue to move forward as an Association we are faced with ongoing challenges. We believe that through cooperation and collaboration we will continue to see American Teeswaters grow and thrive here in the US.
Dedicated to the preservation and protection of the American Teeswater Sheep - 2007 all rights reserved.