|Conservation status||FAO (2007): endangered-maintained|
|Other names||Pecora di Corteno|
|Country of origin||Italy|
|Horn status||hornless in both sexes|
The Corteno or Pecora di Corteno is a breed of sheep from the Val Camonica, in the province of Brescia in Lombardy, northern Italy. It is raised in the comune of Corteno Golgi, from which it takes its name, and in the neighbouring comuni of Edolo, Malonno and Paisco Loveno, all lying within the Comunità Montana di Valle Camonica. It is one of the forty-two autochthonous local sheep breeds of limited distribution for which a herdbook is kept by the Associazione Nazionale della Pastorizia, the Italian national association of sheep-breeders.
The origin of the Corteno breed is unknown, but is probably shared with that of other lop-eared breeds of the Alpine region such as the Bergamasca, the Biellese and the Lamon. Numbers were estimated at 4000 in 1983, and at about 1600 in 1995. In 2006 the total number was estimated at 1500, of which 131 were registered in the herdbook. The conservation status of the breed was listed as "critical" by the FAO in 2007. In 2013 the number registered for the breed was 295.
The meat of the Corteno is exceptionally fatty. It is traditionally used to produce Cuz, a local type of preserved meat. Whole carcases of wether mutton are boiled in a cauldron for five or six hours with salt and a little water; the meat is then put up in terracotta jars with more salt and sealed with the mutton-fat.
- 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.
- Norme tecniche della popolazione ovina “Pecora di Corteno”: standard della razza (in Italian). Ministero delle Politiche Agricole, Alimentari e Forestali. Accessed May 2014.
- Breed data sheet: Pecora di Corteno - Di Corteno. Domestic Animal Diversity Information System of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. Accessed September 2013.
- Luigi Andrea Brambilla (2005). Razze zootecniche in pericolo di estinzione: la pecora di Corteno[permanent dead link] (in Italian). Vita in campagna 2005 (3): 51.
- Daniele Bigi, Alessio Zanon (2008). Atlante delle razze autoctone: Bovini, equini, ovicaprini, suini allevati in Italia (in Italian). Milan: Edagricole. ISBN 9788850652594. p. 214–215.
- 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. 66. Accessed September 2013.
- J. Errante, L.A. Brambilla, M. Corti, E. Pastore, R. Leonarduzzi (2006). Le razze ovine autoctone a rischio del Valle d'Aosta, Lombardia, Veneto, Friuli Venezia Giulia[permanent dead link] (in Italian). Associazione RARE. Accessed May 2014.
- Consistenze Provinciali della Razza F8 Pecora di Corteno Anno 2013 (in Italian). Associazione Nazionale della Pastorizia: Banca dati. Accessed September 2013.
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