Hereford cattle

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Hereford cattle

(hûr`fərd), breed of beef cattle originated in Herefordshire, England, and thought to be descended from the primitive cattle of the country. They are medium-to-large, deep-bodied, thick-fleshed animals with white faces and white markings. Probably first brought to the United States in 1817 by Henry Clay, they are now the predominating breed on the Western ranges. A polled (hornless) Hereford strain developed in the United States by selective breeding is now very popular. Herefords are also widely raised in Australia and South America.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Hereford Cattle


a meat-producing breed of cattle, bred in the 18th century in England, in the county of Herefordshire, by screening and selection of local cattle. The animals are of typical meat-producing build. The body is barrel-shaped, squat, wide, and deep, with a prominent dewlap. The color is dark red; the head, withers, dewlap, belly, lower parts of the extremities, and tail brush are white. Average measurements of cows (in cm): height at withers, 125; chest depth, 72; chest circumference, 197; diagonal length of the body, 153; shank circumference, 20. Weight of bulls is 850-1,000 kg; of cows, 550-650 kg. The cattle feed and fatten well and produce high-quality “marbled” meat. The slaughter yield is 58-62 percent, maximum, 70 percent.

Herefords are hardy; they adapt well to various natural conditions and to prolonged pasturing; they tolerate long journeys well. The breed is widespread in England, the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and other countries. They were brought into the USSR in 1928. They are used for commercial crossbreeding with dairy and dairy-meat breeds. The Kazakh white-headed breed of cattle was developed by crossbreeding Herefords with Kazakh and Kalmyk cattle. Hereford cattle are widespread in the Orenburg, Cheliabinsk, Rostov, and Saratov oblasts, the Altai and Krasnodar krais of the RSFSR, the Kazakh SSR, and other regions.


Garrigus, W. P. Zhivotnovodstvo SShA. Moscow, 1957. (Translated from English.)
Skotovodstvo: Krupnyi rogatyi skot, vol. 1. Moscow, 1961.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.