Talk Like a Heritage Breeder...

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beef: meat from cattle

belted: white band at the midsection

breed: a group of animals that have come to resemble one another (either through selection and breeding or adaptation to the environment) and that, when mated, reproduce the same type

bull: male with his reproductive organs in working order

calf: baby bovine

Colorsided or lineback: coat pattern where color is restricted to the animal’s sides with a white line down the spine

cow: mature female

composite breed: a breed made up of two or more breeds and designed to be mated with others of its kind (rather than being repeatedly recreated)

crossbred: offspring from the mating of animals of different breeds

gomer (or spotter) bull: male with a vasectomy (used to detect which cows are ready for artificial insemination)

heifer: young female that has not yet had her first calf

landrace: a group of animals that is ideally suited to its environment, often developed with minimal help from humans or using traditional rather than modern breeding methods; landrace is not so much a “breed” as a type because they aren’t bred to a specific breed standard or goal

marbling: fat distribution in muscle tissue that gives beef more flavor

oxen: draft bovines (often steers)

polled: genetically hornless cattle

purebred: an animal within a breed that has known parentage and can be registered

steer: castrated male