77 lb per head given by Oxford-Hampshire cross-bred wether lambs, aged nine months two weeks.
The only exception was in the case of the slowly-maturing Cheviot and mountain breeds, for which the second class was for wether sheep of any age above twelve months.
At the 1905 show, sheep of each breed, and also cross-breds, competed as (1) wether lambs under twelve months old, and (2) wether sheep above twelve and under twenty-four months old.
In the case of wether sheep, twelve to twenty-four months old, the highest daily increase was oï¿½ 56 lb per head as yielded by Lincolns, aged twenty-one months.
In the sheep section of the Smithfield show the classes for ewes were finally abolished in 1898, and the classes restricted to wethers and wether lambs, whose function is exclusively the production of meat.
In 1907, the championship went to a Cheviot wether, but in the two pure, short-woolled classes all the ten awards were secured by Suffolks, and in the two cross-bred wether classes nine of the ten awards went to a Suffolk cross.
When the old bell-wether at the head rattles his bell, the mountains do indeed skip like rams and the little hills like lambs.