The Brangus breed was developed from crossing Angus and Brahman cattle, the combination being 37.5% Brahman and 62.5% Angus.
Combining the excellent beef quality of Angus with something a little hardier, such as the Brahman, resulted in a well-rounded beef breed, known for its hardiness, adaptability and maternal traits.
In the 1930s, breeders from the United States and Canada began experimenting with breeding programmes, crossing the two lines.
They then gathered in 1949 and founded the American Brangus Breeders Association, later renamed the International Brangus Breeders Association (IBBA).
Today, Brangus cattle can be found all over the USA, Canada, Mexico, Australia, Argentina and as far as South Rhodesia in Africa.
Brangus cattle have a distinctive look. Their sleek coat is either completely black or completely red and bulls have a moderate hump. They have medium-large ears and are naturally polled.
Brangus cattle generally have a good temperament, a trait that was originally selected for when the breed was created.
Bulls mature by two years of age, while heifers are ready to be bred by 14 months of age. They normally have their first calf at 24 months of age and can keep calving until their mid-teens.
Brangus cows have inherited the strong maternal instincts of the Brahman, making them excellent mothers looking after strong calves at birth.
Mature Brangus females generally weigh approximately 500-550kg, while bulls can reach up to 900kg.
The breed retains the Brahman's natural ability to thrive under adverse conditions and can produce high-quality beef off sparse pasture or in the feedlot. They are adaptable to most climates, from hot and humid to below-zero temperatures.
A high liveweight gain per day and excellent carcass quality, producing lean meat with little excess fat, makes the Brangus a popular breed with beef producers.
In comparative studies, Brangus cattle were shown to have great marbling quality and high levels of tenderness, scoring 97% in the study compared with the pure Angus score of only 94%.
More information about the breed can be found on the International Brangus Breeders Association website.
Photo credit: IBBA