Scientific and Common Name(s)
Scientific name: Bos Taurus
Common names: Domestic cattle, Cow, Cattle, Bull(males)
Habitat and Geographic Range
Cattle spend most of their lives grazing, so as a result they live on green pastures or Grasslands, around the world (Eastridge, 2006). Marjory of cattle are domesticated, therefore most of them are located on farms and ranches.
Cattle have been domesticated by humans for centuries and by various cultures, so as a result, cattle are almost found everywhere around the world. We can find both domesticated and wild cattle in North and South America, Africa, Europe, Asia and so forth.
Size/Weight and Life Span
A cattle weight varies a lot and is based on various factors such as food, sex, location and type of breed, but in general males(bulls) are hundreds of pounds heavier than females. In general cattle weight around 324 lbs to 3005 lbs or 147kg to 1263kg (Dewey & Ng, 2014).
A cattle’s life span is negatively impacted due to the conditions they are subjected to on farms or ranches. Ninety percent of cattle death are the result of a trip to the slaughter house. On average cattle live for 6.8 years, until they are killed for their meat and hide (i.e. leather). Of a cows(female) life, on average, 4.3 years are used for milk production before they are slaughtered (Pritchard, Coffey, Mrode & Wall, 2013). On a positive note, in the wild cattle live on average 8 to 20 years (Pritchard et al., 2013).
Cattle are herbivores, their diets, for the most part consist of grass and hay. Their diet also consists of forage (like legumes, grass, sorghum and silage), cereal grains (like barely, wheat and hay) (Eastridge, 2006). Cattle are also fed excess food items, that were going to be thrown out like, vegetables, bakery waste and molasses. Although cattle are herbivores, in order to give their cattle more protein, some farmers feed them animal by-products. These include tallow, poultry meal and blood meal (Eastridge, 2006).
Reproduction and Communication
Cattle are polygamous (meaning more than one mate) and it is usually the alpha males that are able to mate with multiple females in a herd (Dewey & Ng, 2014). Around the age of one, cows reach sexual maturity and are able to give birth. A cow’s estrus cycle(ovulation) last about 20-24 days and this cycle repeats every 18-21 days. (Lucy, 2001). When a cow is most fertile (at heat) it will stand around to be mounted by a male, other signs include restlessness, licking and smelling other cows and erect ears (Lucy, 2001). When a cow is finally fertilized gestation takes about 9 months just like humans.
Cattle, just like other mammals communicate by different means such as, touch, sounds and chemical signals (Dewey & Ng, 2014). Cattle are known as the least vocal farm animals, but cattle do vocalize in different ways (i.e. grunts and moo’s) depending on the situation. Situations such as calling other cattle, different emotional states, matting and fighting each other (Watts & Stookey, 2000).
Predation: Does this animal have any predators?
Although most cattle live on enclosed farms and ranches, they still have many natural predators such as wolves, mountain lions, bears, wild dogs and coyotes (Kluever, Howery, Breck & Bergman, 2009). Especially for wild cattle, humans are the number one predator, as they are a great source of meat and other resources (Kluever et al., 2009).
Most cattle are domesticated so there is no danger at all. There about 1.4 billion cattle around the world and most of them live on secure ranches and farms. Also cattle are continuously breed naturally and through artificial means, therefore it is essentially impossible for them to go extinct.
Did You Know?
Cattle spend most of their lives grazing, and in a typical day they consume about 70 kg of grass (Dewey & Ng, 2014). This is equivalent to the weight of an average young adult.
grazing on edge of Scipio Lake
Vacas lecheras en un improvisado corral de manejo poco antes de ser vacunadas contra brusela y tuberculosis, en una típica acción de manejo zoosanitario realizado por los propios ganaderos locales. En este caso, es Don Miguel Lara Ramírez, Presidente del Comisariado Ejidal, quien aparece en la foto vacunando.
El corral se encuentra junto a un viejo jacal con más de 20 años de antigüedad y que representa una de las dos construcciones (no siempre habitadas) en el área de uso común del Ejido La Jococa, municipio de San Pedro, Coah.
Some "leakage" into this ungrazed block.
Weather was slightly humid mid to high 60s,one cow on the side of the road alone
Cattle (colloquially cows) are the most common type of large domesticated ungulates. They are a prominent modern member of the subfamily Bovinae, are the most widespread species of the genus Bos, and are most commonly classified collectively as Bos primigenius. Cattle are raised as livestock for meat (beef and veal), as dairy animals for milk and other dairy products, and as draft animals (oxen or bullocks) (pulling carts, plows and the like). Other products include leather...