You thought you knew everything about Texas Longhorns, but there's more to these country bovines than meets the eye.
Every Texan knows what a Longhorn looks like, as does every country-dwelling cowboy or girl, especially in Oklahoma and Kansas where cattle drives and ranching are common sights. In fact, most Americans could point out Texas Longhorn cattle in a lineup. It's not hard when their name implies their appearance via their horn length.
12 Fascinating Facts About Texas Longhorn Cows
1. Their population plummeted to near extinction in the 1920s. It took guidance from the United States government to increase their numbers.
2. Both male Longhorn bulls and female heifers have horns.
3. They are not related to the English Longhorn, and they don't look anything like them, either. Sometimes they are mistaken for Watusi cattle, though.
4. These breeds of cattle traveled from Spain to the West Indies and then Mexico before arriving in Texas, Nebraska, and the rest of the USA. Yes, the Longhorns were originally Mexican longhorn beef instead of Texas longhorn beef!
5. The Longhorn didn't become the Texas state large mammal until 1995.
6. They come in all colors and patterns, including spotted.
7. Longhorn herds traveled long distances because, unlike other cattle, the animal could forage on brush and survive for days without water on the open range.
8. Known for their hardiness, Texas Longhorn calves stand quicker than other breeds and they are known for their easy calving. Sturdy live calves are popular in crossbreeding.
9. Their horns are said to be exemplary of evolution's natural selection.
10. Texas Longhorn cattle sales to cattlemen and ranchers post-Civil War brought the state of Texas out of an economic depression.
11. The widest horn measurement spans over 10 feet.
12. The breed is also referred to as the American Longhorn.
Other Facts About Texas Longhorn Cattle
The ancestral Spanish cattle were first brought to North America by Christopher Columbus in 1493 to the Caribbean island of Hispaniola.
The longhorn cow is so famous there are novels about it! "The Longhorns" by J. Frank Dobie is a masterpiece, and he was instrumental in the saving of the Texas Longhorn breed of cattle from extinction.
Did you learn anything new?
Longhorns are certainly a unique breed of cow. While they are often quite aggressive, they can still make loving farm companions as well as beef cattle, as they are known for their lean beef. Visit the Texas Longhorn Breeders Association of America for more information on this beautiful cattle breed.
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This post was originally published on Sep 30, 2020.