Brahman cattle breed

What is Brahman breed?

Brahman cattle breed is popular crossbreed developed in the USA using different races of the Indian cow species, Bos indicus. Most of the initial attempts of cross-breeding were from the south-western part of Texas state of the USA and along the coastal region of the Gulf of Mexico. The exact time and the races of Indian cow breeds used for creating this hybrid are not very clear. Varying information regarding this is available from different sources. However, it is believed that several races of Bos indicus were imported to the US between 1854 and 1926 and are used for cross-breeding. According to reports, Brahman cattle breed is the progeny of four different Indian cattle breeds like the Gir from Gujarat, the Ongole from Andhra Pradesh, the Kankrej from Gujarat and another breed called “Gujarat”, which is not available in the current list of Indian cattle breeds.

Why are imported breeds of India used by other countries?

The Indian cattle, Bos indicus is unique with several exceptional qualities. This species has centuries of adaptation and evolution making it fit to withstand the challenges of a wide range of tropical pests and the diseases. Added to this, the unrelenting power of endurance to cope up with starvation, water scarcity, environmental stress and power of searching for food in the open pastures have made them in high demand for farming purpose. Several countries have imported Bos indicus for farming and breeding. Brazil is the largest importer of Indian cattle breed. Many of them adapted well in Brazil and known to yield more milk than what they yield in India. Gir breed is an example of this category and according to reports, a Gir cow has won the competition for milk production has created a record yield of 63 Litters of milk per day. According to literature the Maharaja of Bhavnagar had gifted Gir cattle to Brazil between the 1890s and 1960s. Interestingly, the current population of Gir cattle in Brazil is about 40 lakhs. USA and Australia are other two countries who imported Indian cattle breed for domestication and breeding. This has led to the production of Brahman cattle breed and some other cross breeds like Africangus, Beefmaker, American (hybrids of Bos indicus and Bos taurus) etc. in the US. Australia also produced quite good number of hybrid cattle using the imported Indian cattle breed. Australian Friesian Sahiwal,  Australian Milking Zebu,  Australian Charbray,  Australian Brangus etc. (all cross breeds of Bos indicus and Bos taurus ) are few examples of Australian hybrids of Indian cattle.

The Brahman cattle breed has become the most famous and popular cattle breed for beef in the US, Asia, South America, and Australia. This is because of the un matching adaptability of this breed to the sub-tropical climate and its productivity. In fact, Australia has created another breed called Australian Brahman using imported Brahman cattle breed from the US. This is the main breed supporting the beef industry of Australia.  In addition, Australia exports the breed to Malaysia which is the key supplier of beef cattle to the South-east Asian countries.

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