The University of Wisconsin-Madison plans to end its dairy sheep research program and get rid of hundreds of ewes in northwestern Wisconsin.
The Department of Animal Sciences officials say it's no longer financially viable to have species-specific faculty members. It instead will focus more broadly on agricultural sectors.
Agricultural senior associate dean Richard Straub says the dairy sheep industry has not grown much in the past several years.
The university's 300 ewes are kept at the Spooner Agricultural Research Station in Washburn County. The Journal Sentinel says the herd will be discontinued this fall, but the Spooner station will remain open because it does other research.
Another sheep herd that is studied for wool and meat production at the university's Arlington Agricultural Research Station in south-central Wisconsin is not affected.