Gir cattle breed is famous for milk production in India. The cattle breed is well adapted to the native climate, and this is the reason why it is so prevalent in the country.
In this post, you will discover information about the history and origin of the cattle breed, physical characteristics, uses and special care.
History and Origin of Gir Cow
Gir cow is a zebu cattle breed that originated from India. The strain of cattle has been used locally in the improvement of other local kinds.
The research by our experts shows that the native homeland of the cattle breed is the hills of Gir and the forest of Kathiawar.
Amreli, Bhavnagar, Junagadh and Rajkot districts of Gujarat are said to be the original homeland of this beautiful breed of cattle.
The breed derives its name from the Gir forest, and the forest contains natural habitat suitable for the cattle breed. However, the race has several nicknames according to the area where it is being bred such as Desan, Surti, Bhodali, Sorthi, Kathiawari, and Gujarati.
Some of the other regions in the world where the cattle breed is becoming popular are the United States, Brazil, Mexico, and Venezuela.
According to the research done by the team of experts from livestock conservancy, the breed is among those cattle breeds used during the development of Brahman cattle.
Gir Cattle Characteristics
Size and Weight
The cattle breed has a unique appearance in terms of size. They are typically huge animals. The average weight of an adult cow is about 385 kg while that of a bull is 545 kg.
Body Shape and Coat Color
The cattle have a well-proportioned body shape with a round shape udder. The color of the coat is bright red with white spots. However, the color of the cattle varies from pure red to speckles of yellow-red to white with large red spots.
The animals are hardy, and they have the capability of surviving in harsh weather conditions. Girl bull is too strong, and many people use them from pull heavy loads as well as ploughing.
Behavior and Temperament
The cattle are loving, gentle and friendly. They adore being scratch on dewlaps and around the legs. They can easily be managed even by beginners in cattle farming business.
Maturity and Reproductive Rate
All zebu cattle breeds have slow maturity and reproductive rate. These cattle are not suitable for commercial farming since even the production rate is low.
The cattle have a big head that has a prominent bulging shield and long face. They also have a convex forehead that provides a cooling effect on the brain and pituitary gland. The long ears enable them to chase away flies and insects.
Both the bulls and cows have horns that are well developed and thick at the base. The horns grow downwards and backward with upward curves. They also have a hump on the back.
Uses of Gir Breed of Cattle
The cattle breed is raised in India mainly for milk production. However, some parts of the world, they are known for meat production. Most researchers use the strain to improve other local kinds.
The cows have the capability of producing about 1590 kg per lactation. They tend to have a lifespan of about 12-15 years, and during this period, the cow can give birth to approximately 10-12 calves.
Note: The breed of cattle does well in Brazil than any other country, and they tend to produce about 3500 kg milk per lactation on average.
Gir Cow Pictures
Here is the summary of the cattle breed:
- Have horns
- They are robust and hardy cattle breeds
- Have a hump
- Resistance to tropical cattle diseases
- Gentle and Friendly to humans
- Suitable for both meat and milk production