Hereford Cattle – Characteristics Details Cattle



From time immemorial the Hereford Cattle and other adjacent counties have been famous for their size, endurance, and meaty fitness.

This breed was founded on a type of animal that prevailed in Hereford for centuries. Already in 1627 already knew the excellence of this race.

Based on somewhat scarce data Stanford (1956) states that the Dutch cattle brought from Dunkirk to Lord Scudamore probably conferred to the Hereford their size and white color of the face and abdominal region.

It also indicated the analogy between this breed and the Dutch Groningen cattle. With the difference that the red color of the first replaces the white of the second.

Consequently, it is unquestionable that, although its origin is unknown. The modern Hereford race descends from founding animals of undoubted merit and with a marked resistance to disease.

Breed Improvement:

The improvement of the Hereford Cattle, which ultimately led to the current type of meat fitness.

It really began in the middle of the eighteenth century thanks to the works of Benjamin Tomkins (1714-1789). And his son of the same name (1745-1815).

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Tomkins father began practicing his selection theories using animals he presented. This breed had two major characteristics of every butcher’s animal: strong constitution combined with fattening ability at an early age.

This second factor has been improved and accentuated by other breeders. This was done in an intensive program of improvement carried out in the two subsequent centuries.

Like most of the other Hereford breeders of the time, they were not at all interested in the secondary and less important features of the coat.

At a later date, when functional features had been sufficiently established, a lively controversy arose as to the color and ideal marks that should be adopted as typical.

At the beginning of the 19th century, animals were preferred with one of the following four layers: red with the white face, red with a speckled face, ash, and light gray.

Characteristics Details of Hereford Cattle:

The Hereford Cattle color marks are very remarkable and impose a uniform appearance to the cows.

The white face is a dominant character. CCharacteristicsthat is transmitting to the mestizo progeny independently of the animal that came to cross the parent Hereford.

The coat is reddish color except for the head, chest, abdominal region and lower legs. These have a white hue also have a white stripe along the back and the tassel of the tail is white. You May Also Like To Read Highland Cattle

Farmers often require some reddish color around the eyes when the animals are to live with exposure to strong sunlight. It can estimate that this reduces the formation of vesicles and sunburns.

The skin should be thick, but soft to the touch and well covered with soft hair. Usually the hair of this species is silky and curly medium length.

The skin and the nose have no pigmentation and can thus burn when intense sunlight hits the white areas of the back. The head is moderately short but broad and has horns of waxy color.

The horns have an outward direction and have a slight downward and forward curve; the tips must not present coloration. The dorsal line is horizontal and wide, with open backs and an approximately straight ventral line.

The chest is deep and full, with ribs with enough bows. The hindquarters are long, wide and horizontal; the musculature reaches the hocks. The legs are short, of bones with good proportion and with good aplomb.


With the exception of exhibition animals, Hereford cattle can be breeding in natural conditions. Calves follow their mothers until eight months of age.

In general, the animals remain in the pastures throughout the year. This may be relation to the low incidence of tuberculosis and other similar diseases in this breed.

During winter, when pastures are scarce, animals receive hay, straw, silage or roots. Only when it is necessary for the purpose of livestock expositions are they specially fed with feed and fodder of good quality.

The Hereford are excellent grazing animals and fatten easily in good quality meadows or in grassland and legume grassland.

They have also demonstrated in other countries that they are able to subsist on low-lying, poor-quality pastures, recovering quickly when the rains come.


Hereford Cattle’s main aptitude is the production of meat, just as the females of this species are excellent producers of milk. Distribution, Surveying and Soils.

Although the natural environment of Hereford cattle is the county of Herefordshire and other surrounding counties.

With fertile soils of plain and valley, this breed has spread so widely all over the world today that it is impossible to define the topography and the types of soil that best suit this breed. You May Also Like To Read Jersey cow.

They live in meadows of good quality and they give meat in conditions of extensive exploitation in campero regime and also live in arid conditions in which the drought forces long journeys in search of fodder and water.

In fact, it is now widespread in many parts of the temperate and semitropical zones of the world.

Given the universality of its distribution has no purpose to illustrate the environmental and climatic conditions in which the Hereford breed lives and arose.

Special Characteristics:

Heifers usually have their first calving at two and a half years of age and can continue their reproductive activity regularly until the age of 14 or 15, although some have surpassed this age.

Hereford cows are good mothers and can be keep in good condition while they can to nurse the offspring.

The milk yield of the English Hereford cows was very satisfactory; some of them in their third lactation gave a figure of 4.620 to 4.840 pounds. The fat content of Hereford cow milk was on average 4,41 percent.

Hereford cattle are extremely resistant in adverse conditions, perhaps as much or more than any other European race.

They are extremely efficient grazers and are fed on herbazales giving channels of meat well marbled, as the public demands it. Bulls are very arrogant and can often be use to obtain mestizos for the meat industry. As A References: Wikipedia.


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