The name "curlycoat" is derived from Earth's Lincolnshire curly coats, also known as "sheep-pigs". On The Land, we have thus far not discovered any animals solely resembling either Earth's sheep or its pigs (boars notwithstanding). However, while curlycoats existed at some point on Earth, it is not believed that they exist there anymore. It is also known that Landian curlycoats differ somewhat from Terran ones, which perhaps more closely resembled pigs than sheep; whereas Landian curlycoats are somewhat more sheeplike. Curiously, according to spirits, Landian curlycoats' skins are more suitable for making into leather than Terran pigskins, though their meat tastes almost identical to that of Terran pigs, in roughly their first three years. As a curlycoat ages, the flavor and toughness slowly changes, so that if a curlycoat is slaughtered after reaching three years of age, it is more like the meat of sheep. Certain terminology for Landian curlycoats also follows that of Terran sheep: females are called "ewes," males are called "rams," and young are called "lambs." The meat of curlycoats which have been slaughtered in their first three years is called "pork" or "ham," but the meat from those slaughtered at three years or older is called "mutton."
Curlycoats are one of the earliest domesticated animals on the Land, used since the time of Connor and Brigid for their wool, their meat, and their milk (and prior to the invention of paper in LY 170, curlycoat skins were used for making both leather and parchment). While most of these products are still used, it should be noted that the use of curlycoat milk has largely been supplanted by milk from cattle, ever since that species' discovery in 225. Cattle have also become the predominant source of leather. Curlycoats have been discovered to exist in almost every area where humans have settled villages, though they did not occur naturally on the Isle of Freedom. However, they were brought to the isle by Roderick and the First 50 Elves in 773.