Friday, 28 October 2016

Impressive Tauros bull at Maashorst

In April of this year, Tauros cattle have been introduced into the Dutch reserve Maashorst. The breeding bull seems to be quite impressive, although its' size is not apparent from the photos. Some examples:
© Wilma Heuvel
© Rene van der Lee
© Caroline van der Lee
Based on its looks, I am pretty sure it is a Maremmana x Pajuna cross. It looks exactly like an intermediate between the two breeds and also resembles the widely publicized bull Manolo Uno of the same combination. I like the looks of this bull, especially as a first-generation cross. Compared to Manolo Uno, it has larger horns, a slenderer body and also a quite impressive hump/neck bulge. Therefore, I like the looks of this individual more than those of Manolo Uno (anyway, a first-generation cross is too early to judge anything). This bull must be of similar age, so I wonder where they have been hiding him all the time - Manolo Uno is the only grown crossbred bull they have been widely promoting so far. 

It would be interesting to know the nature of the cows he is grazing with. I have been thinking about which combination of Tauros breeds would be ideal for this bull to produce potentially very good-looking animals. Maronesa would be very beneficial for the horn shape (inwards curve, orientation), but would also reduce the size and skull length and I don't know if there are any grown Maronesa F1 crosses so far. Another Maremmana x Pajuna as mating partner for this bull has potential, but probably also the best of such "true F2" would probably lack a satisfying inwards curve of the horns and would still have a large dewlap. Also, the risk of the offspring showing diluted coat colours is 1:2 respectively 3:1 (depending on how dominant/recessive the diluting factors are). A Highland crossbreed would add horn volume and density of the winter coat, but the negative traits of Highland are obvious as well. 
But I think it is most likely that this bull was placed among cows of various combinations (like in other herds), therefore I am looking forwards to see the offspring of this bull. 

Wednesday, 26 October 2016

News from the Auerrindprojekt

After the depressing news of Johnny's death in August, there are some good news of the Auerrind Project again.
Domka, one of the three Hungarian Steppe cows of the project, is highly pregnant from Johnny the young Sayaguesa bull. This calf will be the first one of this combination in breeding back (and perhaps world wide) and I am curious on its looks. In sum, it will probably resemble some Taurus and Tauros cows a lot, but it will be interesting to see the amount of dilution in its coat, sexual dichromatism, horn orientation and so on. Of course one individual alone is not representative for the mean average of a certain breed combination.
Pregnant Domka
Currently, the Steppe cows are also grazing with a Cachena x Steppe cross calf. Its father is of Felix Hohmeyer's black Cachena variant and it is not going to be used for the Auerrindprojekt. 
Cachena x Hungarian Steppe
Another interesting photo was recently presented on It shows the breeding bull of Lorsch, Thando, a young Watussi bull. Thando is going to cover the young Sayaguesa and Grey cattle cows and the new photo reveals his impressive horn volume. I am especially looking forward to see the combination of Sayaguesa and Watussi; I think that a 25% Watussi and 75% Sayaguesa or a good "true F2" has the potential to look very impressive already. The winter coat would probably be sufficient, but might need a boost by Grey cattle genes subsequent generations. 
Thando, the young Watussi bull at Lorsch