How To Breed Brahman Cattle: How What, Detailed Facts


Brahman cattle (also known as Brahma) are descended from Indian Bos indicus cattle. 

One of the main reasons Brahman cattle are in high demand is their ability to produce meat, which is, however, inferior to European beef cattle breeds. Consequently, they are frequently crossed with other cattle breeds, either by producing hybrid calves born to pure-bred parents or by developing a composite or hybrid breed. 

Image Credit: Brahman cattle from Pxhere

Some common cross-breeds of Brahman include-

  • Brahmousin
  • Simbrah 
  • Brangus
  • Bra-Swiss

This bovine breed is popular in the southern portions of the United States and South America, Asia, and Australia due to its excellent adaptability to sub-tropical climates and productivity abilities.

Keeping this in mind, we have curated various facts regarding breeding Brahman cattle. This is a list of exhaustive information that will help understand the breeding details of this breed of cattle. 

Brahman cattle details

Image Credit: A white Brahman calf from Pxhere
Origin:Originated from Bos indicus cattle from India
Coat color:Light grey; red to dark black 
Weight:Bulls: 1600 to 2200 poundsCows: 1000 to 1400 poundsCalves (at birth): 60 to 65 pounds
Purpose:Meat
Personality:Intelligent, shy, and curious
Longevity: 15- 20 years
Brahman cattle details

What breeds make Brahman cattle?

As previously noted, the Brahman is one of the most preferred meat-processing cattle breeds. In nature, these are extremely flexible and resilient.

The Brahman, often known as the Brahma, is not a purebred cow. They are a Zebu cattle breed that originated by crossbreeding the Kankrej, Gujarat, Nelore, and Gir strains. It is noteworthy that the American Brahman was the first beef cattle breed to be bred in the US.  

Between 1854 and 1926, a nucleus of around 266 bulls and 22 cows of different Bos indicus (Indian cattle) varieties were transported into the US, which resulted in the breeding of the first American Brahman cattle.

When are Brahman cattle ready to breed?

Brahman cattle are used for creating different US beef breeds. But the common question that strikes most is when is a Brahman bull ready to breed?

Brahman cattle generally mature later than Bos taurus cattle; therefore, their reproductive prospects differ. This breed’s reproductive season typically begins when they are 18 to 24 months old.

According to the expert breeders, Brahman cows should not be bred until they are 18 months old. Breeding them at 11-12 months will not affect calving, but it may cause them more stress and postpone their second calving.

If you breed Brahman cows when they are 18 to 24 months old, they will have their first calf between the ages of 2 1/2 and 3. By that time, cows will be completely matured, encouraging them to calf without difficulty and keep their health status intact.

How can you know whether a Brahman cow has bred?

Image Credit: Brahman cattle on a grass field from Maxpixel

So, we know by what age Brahman cows are ready to breed. But what are the characteristics that tell us if the cows are bred?

It is an art with a touch of science that can tell the producer if a Brahman cow has already mated. The following things should be taken into notice:

  • The bull’s behavior

If the bull ignores a cow that has gone out of the estrous cycle and continues to ignore her when you suspect she should be going into heat, that cow has most likely been bred.

  • Estrus activity

A cow has most likely been bred if she does not come into heat after about 21 days or shows any signs of such activity between days 21 and 45 post-breeding.

  • Notice the tail

If a cow has a crooked tail or a tail held out at an unusual angle, it’s maybe easy to detect if she’s been bred. After mating with a bull, the crookedness can last for roughly 24 to 48 hours.

  • Check the female’s hindquarters.

It could indicate mating and ovulation activity if you notice increased fur, mud, or exposed patches on the female’s hind legs. However, these traits should only be used to identify breeding actions if a breeding bull accompanies the female cows.

  • Discharge from the vulva

If a bull has recently bred a cow, you may notice a whitish discharge from her vulva. It’s important to remember that the white discharge you notice is the bull’s seminal fluid.

The gestation period of a Brahman cow

Image Credit: A brahman cow with her calf by CSIRO (CC BY 3.0) from Wikimedia

It is important to note that cows of different breeds have different gestation periods. And those with a shorter gestation period tend to be more advantageous.

Bos indicus breeds like the Brahman, Brahmanbased, and others have longer gestation periods. For these cows, the period is 292 days. It’s worth noting, though, that Brahman cattle have greater conception rates during the summer months.

On the other hand, the prolonged gestation period works against these cattle’s advantages. Nonetheless, their toughness and lack of mammary issues work in their favor. That being said, Brahman crossbred cows have the longest productive lives.

How many cows can a Brahman bull breed?

We have already mentioned that this breed is cross-bred with other bovine breeds to produce cattle worth for the meat market. So, another thing to note is the number of cows a Brahman bull can breed. 

Breeding 1 cow for every month old is suitable till the bulls lose their milk teeth. Therefore, an 18-month-old Brahman bull can breed 18 cows in a breeding season. That being said, once they reach maturity, one Brahman bull can usually breed 20 to 25 cows in each breeding season.

Summary

As a result, the post highlights the Brahman cattle’s distinct reproductive characteristics. They have longer gestation periods, are long-day breeders, and have more seasonal changes than other cattle breeds. Despite this, they are still in high demand due to their durability, versatility, and hardness. 

You can refer to our post at any time if you want to understand more about this breed’s breeding practices. However, this is only an educational piece, and we suggest that you conduct your own research to learn more. 

Atrayee

I am Atrayee, I have extreme passion for the Animal Kingdom and I have written a large number of articles for animal behaviors. I am an Animal Lover by nature and own two Cats.
Exploring new things through learning and unlearning is something that intrigues me a lot. I spend my free time with my husband and two cats. I must say I get to learn a lot of wise things from them! You can catch me on LinkedIn - https://www.linkedin.com/in/atrayee-samaddar-06886567/

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