The Piedmontese cattle are a dual-purpose breed of domestic cattle from Italy which is raised mainly for milk and meat production. It is also called Italian: Piemontese or razza bovina Piemontese.
The breed originated in the region of Piedmont, in north-west Italy. There were numerous local types of Piedmontese cattle until the late 19th century, including the Canavese, the Della Langa, the Demonte, the Ordinario di Pianura and the Scelta di Pianura.
They were triple-purpose animals in the past. And raised mainly for draught power, but also valued for milk and meat. A herdbook was open for the breed in 1877, and selective breeding towards a dual-purpose type began.
Piedmontese cattle carry a unique gene mutation identified as an inactive myostatin allele that causes hypertrophic muscle growth, or double muscling.
Purebred animals are homozygous, meaning they have two identical alleles present for this unique gene. There were about 680,000 Piedmontese cattle in Italy at the beginning of the 20th century.
Currently this cattle breed is available in many other countries of the world.
Piedmontese Cattle Characteristics
Piedmontese cattle are medium sized animals usually with black skin. Their coat color is generally white or wheaten with grey shading. The calves are born fawn colored, and turn grey-white as they mature.
Both bulls and cows usually have horns, and their horns are smaller in size. Average height of the cows is about 131-132 cm at the withers, and about 130-135 cm for the bulls.
The bulls on average weight about 700-850 kg. And average live body weight of the cows vary from 520 to 550 kg. Photo and info from Wikipedia.
Previously, the Piedmontese cattle were used as draught animals and also for milk and meat production in Italy. But currently they are mainly used for meat production and also for milk.
Piedmontese cattle are relatively calm and docile in temperament and noted for their longevity. The cows are highly fertile and they exhibit excellent mothering instincts.
The breed is currently used for both milk and meat production. Their meat is seen as a premium product. However, review full breed profile of this breed in the chart below.
|Other Name||Italian: Piemontese or razza bovina Piemontese|
|Breed Purpose||Milk, Meat|
|Special Notes||Strong, hardy, well adapted to a variety of climates|
|Bulls||About 700 to 850 kg|
|Cows||About 520 to 550 kg|
|Climate Tolerance||All Climates|
|Coat Color||White or wheaten with grey shading|
|Country/Place of Origin||Italy|