Diary Cattle 

Ayshire

Breed Characteristics

  • Ayrshires are red and white, and purebred Ayrshires only produce red and white offspring

  • Ayrshires are medium-sized cattle and should weigh over 1200 pounds at maturity. . 

  • Other traits that make Ayrshires attractive to the commercial dairyman include the vigor of Ayrshire calves.  They are strong and easy to raise.  

  • The actual average of all Ayrshires on official ABA programs in 2002 is  17,230 pounds of milk with 665 pounds of fat and 542 pounds of protein.

Brown Swiss

Breed Characteristics

  • Brown Swiss cattle can be grey, dark brown, tan or even almost white in color. Their hooves, muzzle and switch are usually black. They are often noted for their big floppy ears and docile temperament.

  • Perhaps the oldest of all dairy breeds, Brown Swiss originated in the valleys and mountain slopes of Switzerland around 4000 B.C., according to some historians.

  • The world population of Brown Swiss is reported to be about 7 million, which ranks either first or second in world-wide population of dairy cattle.

  • The Brown Swiss you see grazing across the United States countryside descend from initial importations of 25 bulls and 140 females from Switzerland.

Guernsey

Breed Characteristics

  • Guernseys are considered medium-to-large cattle, with cows averaging 1,400 pounds and bulls 2,000 pounds, with a minimum desired weight of 1,200 for dairy cows.

  • Guernsey cattle typically are horned, and these horns are short and curved in shape.

  • Guernsey cattle get their name from the British island on which the breed originated.

 

Holsteins

Breed Characteristics

  • Holsteins are large, stylish animals with color patterns of black and white or red and white.

  • A mature Holstein cow weighs about 1,500 pounds and stands 58 inches tall at the shoulder.

  • Top producing Holsteins milked three times a day have been known to produce over 72,000 pounds of milk in 365 days.

  • It is desirable to have Holstein females calve for the first time between 23 and 26 months of age. 

Jersey

Breed Characteristics

  • Body weight at puberty averaged 425 lbs. (193 kg.) for the Jersey heifers.

  • It is typically light brown in colour, though this can range from being almost grey to dull black, which is known as Mulberry. They can also have white patches which may cover much of the animal.

  • Jersey cows are renowned for their ease of calving.

  • One reason the Jersey thrives around the world is its adaptability to various climates

     

Breed Characteristics

  • Mature Milking Shorthorns average over 15,000 pounds milk, 500 pounds fat and 465 pounds protein. 

  • Milking Shorthorn cows are moderately framed and have comparatively small calves that are vigorous at birth and easy to raise.

  • The first importation of Shorthorns to the United States was in 1783.

  • It is a fact that no breed has made greater improvement during the past 15 years and even greater increases are expected in the future. 

Milking Shorthorn

© 2015 Michigan State Fair, LLC - All Rights Reserved

Suburban Collection Showplace Michigan State Fair SEC JS SEG 110031