Heritage sheep breed Lincolns still play an important role on the agricultural show scene, according to one stud principal who took out the breed's highest title in Melbourne.
Ian and Rae Christie, Garvald Lincoln stud, Byaduk, won the supreme Lincoln sash at the Melbourne Royal Show on Thursday and was one of two studs to compete in the competition.
The uncommon sheep attracted the attention of onlookers and serves an important role by recognising Victoria's heritage with the breed, Mr Christie said.
"My grandfather and his brothers started breeding Lincolns in 1873 so they've been part of our history since then," he said.
Mr Christie said the benefits of Lincolns was length, but the breed had faced a dwindling popularity in the last two decades.
"They're a heritage breed and out of favour at the moment, their wool is not very valuable at the moment but they're part of our history with the Corriedales and Polwarths," he said.
"To a certain extent, they're a backwater but they're still part of our history and have those qualities, especially a heavy fleece, which some people may like."
Not only did the stud win supreme exhibit, it also claimed the grand champion ewe exhibit.
"We had some nice sheep at the show as did the Allaray stud too but ours must have just been a fraction luckier on the day," Mr Christie said.
"Maybe our sheep had a bit more evenness in the wool which is lovely and heavy wool."
Mr Christie said Lincolns were easy-care sheep that had good maternal qualities.
"They also make excellent mothers and quite often they have twins," he said.
"Our supreme ram is a good type of sheep and he has a lovely heavy fleece.
"They're also very easy to handle and he'll likely stay in our stud."
Lincoln judge Ross Jackson, Jackson Border Leicesters and Poll Dorsets, Moyston said he enjoyed judging breed.
"The supreme ram today was a very good example of a Lincoln breed," he said.
"It carried a big, heavy and illustrious fleece."
Mr Jackson said recognising the breed's connection to the state's sheep industry was important.
"It's great that breeders take the time to keep these breeds going and to see them at shows like the Royal Melbourne Show are great to remember our heritage," he said.
"The supreme ram had heavy fleece, great volume and was very structurally correct."