Longhorn Females - un-edited

Two breeds of beef cattle are called “longhorns” -- the English longhorn and the American or Texas longhorn. They're unrelated, but they have things in...
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Two breeds of beef cattle are called “longhorns” -- the English longhorn and the American or Texas longhorn. They're unrelated, but they have things in common. Both breeds were brought from the brink of extinction by 20th century enthusiasts, and both are known for exceptionally lean beef. They both get their names from their location of origin and their characteristic horns, which do not look the same. English longhorns' curve deeply inward toward the nose, while Texas longhorns' grow outward from the sides of the head to spans up to 7 feet. Surprisingly—for city folks at least—cows (that is, mature female cattle) can have horns like the two large females in this photo! In fact, there are several cattle breeds in which the cows have horns. To name just a few: the Danish Red, the White Park, and the Texas Longhorn.

The Texas longhorn is something of a rarity among breeds because it developed naturally rather than as a product of human selective breeding, as a result of wild Spanish stock mixing with the free-range domestic cattle of settlers. The half-wild Texas longhorn was recognized as a distinct breed of cattle around the time of the Civil War, and it grew in popularity until the early 1900s. When ranchers started fencing their pastureland and open ranges declined, the Texas longhorn lost favor to other breeds. A movement to save the breed from extinction began in 1927, motivated by academic and historic preservation interests. In the 21st century, the demands of health-conscious consumers prompted a renewed interest in Texas longhorn beef.

Texas longhorns reach maximum weight in less than 10 years and produce exceptionally lean meat. Longhorn beef has less cholesterol than a skinless chicken breast. A longhorn heifer breeds well into her teens, twice as long as other beef cattle breeds. These low-maintenance animals are adaptive and docile, they birth calves easily and they mature quickly. They eat a broader range of vegetation than other cattle, enabling breeders and ranchers to spend less money on herbicides and field maintenance. Texas longhorns also display a natural resistance to many diseases and parasites that infect herds of other breeds.
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3 Comments | Report
lizziemellis PRO+
lizziemellis March 11, 2018
Wow! Now they are horns great capture:-)
NikonIV August 28, 2018
Join the conversation. Add a comment or even better, a critique. Let's get better together!
NikonIV August 28, 2018
Love the Texas Longhorns....great photo!
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