The first cattle were domesticated almost in the XI century BC. e. This happened in areas where agriculture was most developed: Mesopotamia of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, the territory of the Indus River, Egypt. People have tamed the tours - the progenitors of modern bulls and cows. They had an aggressive character and were often deified. They were originally tamed in order to use their power for land cultivation and other household work. Later they began to kill them for meat. From the moment of domestication to this day, bulls and cows are an integral part of human existence.
Of course, such a powerful animal as a bull cannot leave anyone indifferent. Throughout history, man has discovered and bred more than 1,500 species with a wide variety of characteristics. The names for the breeds were selected from all languages of the world. The breeds were bred for slaughter, reproduction or exhibitions (as a source of pride for the owners). There is no doubt that the giant bulls are becoming the subject of everyone's attention.
The largest bulls in the world come from several breeds.
- Chianine (Italian). This is a breed of bulls from Italy, which is also called porcelain. Adults are white or cream in color and have well-developed muscle mass. They were originally bred to eat their meat. Dimensions: height - 1.9 m, weight - more than 1 ton, length - 2.5–3 m. Bulls have dense, soft wool. Not aggressive. Females weigh 900 kg.
- Gelfby (Hereford). This breed of bulls originated in England. It accounts for the largest percentage of cattle. Gelfbees live in all parts of the world. Animals easily adapt to new conditions and endure long distances. The average weight of an adult bull is 1200 kg. The weight of the cow is 800-900 kg.
- Kalmyk . This breed lives on the territory of Russia. She is represented by very hardy animals leading a nomadic lifestyle. The breed is relatively young - the first mentions appeared about 300 years ago. An adult bull weighs 1200 kg. The weight of the female is from 700 to 1000 kg.
- Charolais . This breed is of French origin. It was bred in the XIII century. Its representatives are white or cream in color. They reach 1.8 m in height, up to 2 m in length. This breed is distinguished by very strong hooves and powerful, wide-set legs, which is necessary to hold a weight of 800-1200 kg. The weight of a newborn calf is 50 kg.
- Bialowieza bison. The area is the territory of Europe. This breed is considered to be the closest species relative of the aurochs. In height, representatives of the breed reach 2 m, length - 1.9–2.2 m, weight - more than 1 ton. This breed is considered wild. At the moment, this breed is listed in the Red Book.
- Podolskaya . Area - Europe. It is a bred breed characterized by a curly, coarse coat. Males weigh 1.5 tons. Bulls of this breed are very aggressive and vindictive. The weight of a newborn calf is 50 kg. The female's weight is about 1000 kg.
- Belgian blue. It is a beef breed, with unnaturally strongly developed muscles. Representatives of this breed are white, blue-white or black. They have low hair density, low milk yield, juicy and tasty meat. Interestingly, the development of muscle mass (as sometimes expressed as "doubled") begins at 4-6 months. The weight of an adult male reaches 1300 kg, cows weigh about 850-900 kg. They are very calm and friendly.
- Holstein-Frisian . It was bred in Canada and the United States by breeding in the 19th century. Individuals are predominantly white with black spots. The main purpose of elimination is to obtain milk. Representatives of this breed are not very tall: about 1.5 m, but males reach 1200 kg in weight, and females - 850 kg.
- Indian bison or gaur . Area - India, Bangladesh. Individuals of this breed are, on average, the largest in the world. They have a deep black color. They exceed 2 m in height. Weight is 1500 kg. Length - no more than 3 m. These are healthy, wild bulls, which lead a predominantly diurnal lifestyle.
Individuals of this species are listed in the Red Book, as they are on the verge of extinction.
- A breed of Asian buffalo or Arnie. They live in India, Bhutan, Laos, Thailand. These are wild bulls living in arid regions, which reach 3 m in length and 2 m in height. The weight may be 1200 kg, but the average male weighs no more than 900 kg. Adults have horns that grow up to 2 m and are black in color.
The number of individuals of this breed is rapidly declining. The main reason is the destruction of the habitat.
- African buffalo. Dimensions: height at the withers - 1.8 m, weight reaches 1200 kg, but most individuals do not exceed 900-1000 kg. Body length - 3–3.5 m. Females are much smaller than males. Individuals of this breed remain wild. They are black in color and have powerful, double-curved horns. The area is central and western Africa.
- Bison . This is the last wild bull in Europe. They live in mixed forests. The last individuals living in their natural habitat were killed back in the 20th century. At the moment, the population is supported by 12 individuals who live in reserves and zoos.
Interestingly, bison are able to interbreed with American bison (their closest species relatives). Thus, a new breed appeared - bison.
- Banteng. Distribution - Southeast Asia, Bali island, Oceania. These are domesticated cattle. Males are black-brown or yellow-brown, while females are red-brown. They weigh up to 900 kg and are 2.2 m long. The herd includes up to 40 females with calves. It is headed by a breeding bull. Representatives of this breed live for about 20 years.
- Yak (sarlyk). Individuals of this breed live in the vastness of Buryatia, Tuva, Altai and Yakutia. They are extremely strong and hardy animals. They are used to transport goods. A distinctive feature is a very long coat that hides the legs. The meat of this animal is considered medicinal, its wool is used to create garments.
Interestingly, when yaks are unhappy, they make a grunting sound. Height at withers - 2 m, weight - up to 1000 kg.
- Bison . This breed includes two subspecies: forest and steppe bison. Individuals are found throughout the continent of North America. They reach 2.5 m in length and 2 m in height.
- Brahman . This is a breed of cows bred in the United States from imported zebu cows. Individuals were bred for meat slaughter. The breed is currently being bred in the USA, Australia, Brazil, Colombia, Venezuela and Argentina.
Record in history
The record bull is a farmer's pride and an object of public scrutiny. It is worth taking a closer look at the list of the largest bulls and cows in the world raised by man.
- Trigger . This is a representative of the white Freesian breed. He lives in England, Hertfordshire. Weight - 1.2 tons, height - 196 cm. This is an agreeable and good-natured animal.
- Field Marshal . The breed is a Charolais. He lives in England. Weight - 1050 kg, height - 195 cm. He has a calm character.
- Sheriff . This is a representative of the Chianine breed. He lives in England on Arthur Duquet's farm. Weight - 1700 kg. Height - 2 m.
- Chile . This is a representative of the Freesian breed. He lives in an English orphanage in Somerset. Weight - 1300 kg. Height - 190 cm. The bull can be aggressive.
- Rep . This is a representative of the Podolsk breed. He lives in Ukraine near Cherkassy. Weight - 1500 kg. Height - 2.1 m. A vindictive and aggressive bull, known as a bull-producer.
- Danube of the Greford breed. Area - Russia. Weight - 1.25 tons. Height - 2 m.
- Daniel . This is a representative of the Holstein breed. He lives on a farm in California. Weight - 1100 kg. Height - 198 cm.
- Donneto . Chianine He lived in Switzerland. Height - 190 cm.Weight - 1700 kg. This is a calm bull, a record holder of the 20th century.
- Blossom . This is a representative of the Holstein Frize breed. She lives on a private farm in America. Her growth is recorded in the Guinness Book of Records. It is 193 cm and weighs 1300 kg.
- Rio . Lives in England. Her weight is 1250 kg, and her height is 180 cm. Rio is the owner of a harmful and wayward character, which is why her horns were cut down. She became an unofficial contender for a place in the Guinness Book of Records as the heaviest cow.
- Big Mu. Lives on a private farm in Australia. Its weight is about 1 ton, its height is 190 cm, but its length is more than 4 m. Mu cannot perform reproductive functions and give milk.
Important! For cows to grow very large, they are often deprived of their reproductive organs. The animal's hormonal system changes, cows become like bulls. In addition, the need for food increases.
The largest individuals in the world
It is worth considering the largest bulls and cows.
- Bulls of the Watussi (Ankole) breed are famous for their horny coating. The horns of these animals can reach 2.5 m in length and 100 kg in weight. Watussi live in the savannas, and horns are used for protection. These are domesticated animals that have a docile character and easily contact with humans.
- The progenitor of all types of bulls on earth was the tour breed. Humans have hunted these animals for centuries for their skins, horns and meat. In the 17th century, the last herd of tours was taken under protection, but the species still died out. Presumably, this was due to an epidemic, although some researchers talk about weak genetic inheritance. In height, they reached 2–2.1 m, and in weight - 1000 kg.
The closest species congeners to them are watussi.
- Kuprey is one of the largest species of bulls that have ever lived on earth. At the moment, representatives of this species of bulls are considered extinct. Height - 2 m, weight - 900 kg, horns could reach 90 cm in length. Habitat - Asia, preferred tropical forests. They did not contact people, which is why they remained poorly studied.
- The heaviest individuals belong to the Charolais breed , although it is quite rare. Even females weigh about 1000 kg. They carry two calves, each weighing 50-60 kg.
- Individuals of the Banteng breed are considered the tallest. The growth of an average individual exceeds 2 m. Their life expectancy is 25 years. In the wild, they live and move in herds.
- Asian buffaloes live in the vastness of Nepal and Cambodia . The growth of the male at the withers reaches two meters. They feed on aquatic vegetation, love shade and water.
- Yaks can be awarded as the longest breed. It can exceed 4 m. Yaks feel great in thin air at an altitude of 6000 m and are able to find food even under the snow.
Big wild bulls
The largest bulls reach the breeds of Gaur, Bialowieza bison, bison, Asian buffalo and African buffalo. In addition to the breeds listed above, two more species are worth mentioning.
- Zebu are descendants of Indian tours. Zebu live in the Indian subcontinent. There are many domestic breeds bred with zebu specimens. On about. Madagascar they are considered sacred animals. Zebu are easily domesticated, although most of the population remains wild. Images of a zebu bull are found on the coats of arms of some African states.
- Individuals of the Tamarau breed are the largest representatives of the island buffalo. They belong to the genus of Asian buffaloes. Tamarau feed on plant foods. Area - about. Mindoro. The population is currently under threat of extinction.
Important! Wild bulls have a quick temper. They can attack not only other individuals that have entered their territory, but also humans. Hunting wild bulls is prohibited as most breeds are on the verge of extinction.
You can see the 5 largest bulls in the world in the video below.