Brahman is an old Indian breed, used for decades for their great beef production!
- Brahman is a beef breed that’s used most commonly across the USA, South America and Australia.
- The breed is developed from the Zebu cattle of Asia, and has been selectively bred from Indian strains of Kankrej, Ongole, Gir and Gujarat cattle.
- It’s used often in crossbreeding programmes; one of the most famous resulting breeds being the Brangus cattle type! You can read more about Brangus here.
- Brahman cattle can adapt well to any climate, particularly countries with high temperatures and humidity. Their glossy coat reflects light and their skin is loose with special sweat glands to keep them cool.
- They have a distinctive and muscular appearance, with a prominent hump over their shoulders and neck. Their hair is short, and can range in colour from pale grey to black. Bulls are often darker in colour, with particularly dark pigmented areas around the neck, lower thighs and shoulders.
- Brahman cattle have horns that curve upwards and slightly towards their rear. This is an important characteristic that farmers may wish to consider before breeding Brahman cattle. The dehorning process can be distressing for calves and time-consuming for farmers who are wary of keeping horned animals in close proximity to other livestock.
- Bulls weigh around 900kg, while cows can reach about 600kg. Calves have low birth weights of about 28kg.
- The breed is quite healthy, and are resistant to parasites. Their thick skin acts as a barrier against tropical insect bites, and their sweat odour is also a repellent. Cases of eye cancer are also uncommon.
- They’re docile, and are easy to handle with a friendly nature. However, it’s always important to take extra care around bulls and cows, regardless of breed! Take a look at our article on Farm Safety to remind yourself of the dangers.
- Brahman cows are excellent mothers with good longevity, and can be expected to calve regularly well into their mid-teens. This reduces herd replacement costs!
- As a breed, their libido is strong and they’re often labelled as sexually precocious animals!
- Brahman cattle grow quickly, and finish early for good beef production! Their carcasses have low fat and high muscle content. Their dressing percentage is also high, with good ‘cut-out’ value.
For a more general overview of how to choose a breed that suits your farm, you can also read our article on Beef Cattle: Choosing the Right Breed for You.
Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons