Beefmaster Cattle

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The basics:
Developed through a breeding program that started in 1908 in Texas, the Beefmaster is the descendant of multiple crosses of the Brahman (of the Gir and Guzerat lineage) with Hereford and Shorthorn cattle. It is said that at some point, the Brazilian Nellore was introduced to the mix. This composite breed was given the name Beefmaster in the 1930s and recognized by the USDA in 1954. The “all-purpose” Beefmasters currently compose the fifth largest breed registry in the United States.

Appearance / health:
The development of the Beefmaster breed was primarily based on characteristics that improve the productivity of the cattle, which are: weight, conformation, milking ability, fertility, hardiness, and disposition. Because of this, the Beefmaster has no particularly distinguishing feature in terms of color, presence of horns, or type of hide. Typically, the Beefmaster has the loose skin folds and polled characteristic similar to the Brahman. The body is muscular, hardy, and able to repel insects.

Like other livestock, cattle require regular vaccinations and inoculations (for example, rabies inoculations) for disease prevention and health management. Similar to other mammals, cows can suffer a variety of ailments and health issues. A veterinarian should be on call and provide regular checkups and monitoring for the entire herd.

Behavior / temperament:
Cattle are docile animals that have strong maternal instincts. They are big and bulky, and could, therefore, inflict harm without intending to. Handling and brushing them constantly while juvenile will help train them to be calm and trusting around humans, which is helpful especially when they need to be attended to by the veterinarian or groomer.

Housing / diet:
Housing for cattle is essentially to give them shelter from extreme weather conditions. Barns, rub-in sheds, stalls, and other structures like windbreaks, should be available where the cows graze. Aside from manmade shelters, trees and tall bushes can provide resting places for cattle to minimize heat stroke or wind chill.

Shelters will give the cows the option to seek safe haven from strong winds, extreme heat or cold, and heavy rains. Shelters should be strong, stable, spacious, well ventilated, and waterproof. Barns should be provided with water supply, and stalls should be lined with hay. They should also be cleaned regularly.

Sprinklers and other cooling systems are recommended for areas that overheat during summer months. Professional and humane fencing should be provided. All poisonous plants should be removed from the pasture; and hay should always be kept dry (wet hay grows molds, becoming a health hazard for cows).

A good quality pasture for grazing is the basic dietary requirement of cattle. The recommended pasture size per cow is 10 acres, without which, the diet should be supplemented with hay. The recommended quantity of hay is an average of 2% of the animal’s body weight per day (or 2 lbs. of hay per 100 lbs. of body weight). Supplements include grain mixes, protein and mineral cubes, and salt blocks, depending on the type of cow, its uses, and the local climate.

Providing a constant supply of fresh water is essential. An adult cow consumes an estimate of up to 20 gallons of water per day.


physical traits, nice lean beef, Beefmaster bull

Beefmaster Cattle Behavior Tip

Beefmaster Cattle

From JKinsey Mar 3 2014 7:16PM


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