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Conservation status
  • FAO (2007): critical-maintained[1]
  • at risk of extinction[2]
Country of origin Italy
Distribution Puglia, Basilicata
Standard MIPAAF
Use formerly triple-purpose, meat/milk/wool; now principally for milk
  • Male: 53 kg[3]
  • Female: 39 kg[3]
  • Male: 72 cm[3]
  • Female: 65 cm[3]
Skin color pinkish white, black speckles or spots
Wool color white
Face color white

The Altamurana is a breed of sheep from the province of Bari, in Puglia in southern Italy.[2][4] It takes its name from the town of Altamura, in the Murge. It is of Asiatic, possibly Syrian, origin. It is raised mainly in the provinces of Bari and Foggia.[2] It was formerly considered a triple-purpose breed, yielding meat, milk, and wool; it is now kept now principally for milk production. It yields approximately 65 kg of milk per lactation, with on average 7.5% fat and 6.5% protein.[2]

The Altamurana is one of the seventeen autochthonous Italian sheep breeds for which a genealogical herdbook is kept by the Associazione Nazionale della Pastorizia, the Italian national association of sheep-breeders.[5] In 1984 the breed population was estimated at 190,000 head.[2] In 2012 the total number recorded for the breed was 230;[6] it is considered to be at risk of extinction.[2]


  1. ^ Barbara Rischkowsky, D. Pilling (eds.) (2007). List of breeds documented in the Global Databank for Animal Genetic Resources, annex to The State of the World's Animal Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture. Rome: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. ISBN 9789251057629. Accessed May 2014.
  2. ^ a b c d e f Daniele Bigi, Alessio Zanon (2008). Atlante delle razze autoctone: Bovini, equini, ovicaprini, suini allevati in Italia (in Italian). Milan: Edagricole. ISBN 9788850652594. p. 180–181.
  3. ^ a b c d Caratteri tipici e indirizzi di miglioramento della razza Altamurana (in Italian). Ministero delle Politiche Agricole, Alimentari e Forestali. Accessed May 2014.
  4. ^ Breed data sheet: Altamurana/Italy. Domestic Animal Diversity Information System of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. Accessed December 2013.
  5. ^ Le razze ovine e caprine in Italia (in Italian). Associazione Nazionale della Pastorizia: Ufficio centrale libri genealogici e registri anagrafici razze ovine e caprine. p. 9. Accessed December 2013.
  6. ^ Consistenze Provinciali della Razza 25 ALTAMURANA Anno 2012 (in Italian). Associazione Nazionale della Pastorizia: Banca dati. Accessed December 2013.