Andalusian Black Cattle

What is the History of Andalusian Black Cattle?

The Andalusian Black (Spanish: Negra Andaluza), known locally as the Negra de las Campiñas, is a taurine breed of cattle that originated in west Andalusia, Spain. They are similar to the Avileña-Black Iberian breed, however the two are distinguished geographically.

The Andalusian Black cattle are a beef cattle breed. They are raised mainly for meat production. Andalusian Blacks are found in two main areas of west Andalusia: from Cordova to the foothills of the Sierra Morena; and in the provinces of Seville, Cádiz and Huelva.The first breed association was formed in Spain in 1996. There were only ~800 purebred individuals in 2007, their numbers reduced due to crossbreeding with other local Spanish breeds; the population increased to 1,883 by 2011. It is now classified as endangered, with 1,415 animals registered with the stud book.

The breed's decline is due to mechanisation of agriculture, segmentation and isolation of subpopulations, crossbreeding, lack of genetic programs, and unstructured breeding efforts. The current breed association, formed in 2005, has undertaken a conservation program in partnership with the University of Cordoba to maintain the breed.

What is the Characteristics of Andalusian Black Cattle?

  • The Andalusian Black cattle are medium sized animals. As the name suggests, main coloration of these animals are black.
  • Both bulls and cows usually have horns. And their horns are usually long and upward curving.
  • Their head can be straight to convex in profile.
  • Andalusian Black cattle are very strong and hardy animals.
  • They are able to adapt to adverse weather conditions.
  • They are usually of good behavior and have relatively calm and docile temperament.
  • They are pretty fast growing animals, and the heifers reach maturity within their 18 to 20 months. They have a fertility rate of 80-95%, with a 1.15% chance of producing twins.
  • The cows are excellent mothers and produce enough milk for their calves.
  • The Andalusian Black cattle were traditionally used as a draught animal. But currently they are used primarily for beef production mainly due to the mechanization of agriculture.
  • They are also crossed with other cattle breeds for producing beef.
  • The breed is often kept on unimproved farms with rudimentary infrastructure.
  • A genetic defect common to the Andalusian breeds resulting in lowered fertility rate is present in Andalusian Blacks, however it likely occurs at a lower frequency within this breed compared to the others.
  • They are prone to developing hypermetria.

What is the Weight of Andalusian Black Cattle?

Females grow to 135cm at the withers and weigh 600-650kg. Males grow to 140cm at the withers and weigh 875-950kg.

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