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Belted Galloway Cattle
Developed in the 17th century, the Belted Galloway (a heritage beef breed), is polled (hornless) originating in Galloway, southwestern Scotland and imported into North America beginning in the early 1940's. They are also known as "Belties" and sometimes called "Oreo" Cows. Belties are Black, Red, or Dun and normally the same color on each end, with a white belt around the middle. The Belted Galloway Society in the United States was founded in 1951.
The Belted Galloways’ heritage has conditioned them to survive in harsh climates. As a beef animal, Belted Galloway Beef has been shown in a research study conducted at the University of Guelph, Ontario Canada, to have a total fat content of about 2%, an extremely low percentage. The same study showed that the Belted Galloway Beef tested, only contained about 1% saturated fat. In addition, it showed that Belted Galloway beef had the same fat content as chicken and fish, so fits in well with a healthy diet. Belted Galloway beef is exceptionally tender, fine textured, well marbled, full of flavour, juicy and are the winners of the 2003 Sydney Royal Show "Beef Taste Test".
Winter warmth is provided by a double coat of hair (woolie under coat shed in the summer), instead of the layer of backfat most breeds require. With their double hair coat, Belties need less feed than other breeds to maintain their body heat in winter. Another bonus provided by the double hair coat is that it is able to shed water. Even in very cold weather, the rain hardly penetrates their coat. From summer heat, to winter cold, Belties can thrive all year long with minimal shelter.
Belted Galloways tend to be very docile, which means that they’re easy to handle and care for. They exhibit terrific foraging ability, and they’re not picky about what they eat. A Danish study found that compared to other breeds, the Galloway consumed many more different types of flora. Since they eat flora passed over by other cattle breeds, they can flourish even with less than ideal conditions.
Belted Galloways are medium in size, with cows weighing about 1,000 pounds and bulls about 1,600 pounds. Genetically, Belties are known for their longevity and hardiness, are resistant to disease, have high fertility rates and calving is easy for them. They exhibit great mothering abilities and are very protective of their calves against predators.
Photos and additional information about the breed will be posted soon. Please check back.
This page updated 10 March 2019 @ 1541 Mountain
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