Aure et Saint-Girons

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Aure et Saint-Girons cow at the Salon de l'Agriculture in 2010.

The Aure et Saint-Girons is a French breed of cattle. It is also named casta meaning chestnut because of its colour.


The breed comes from the south of France, in the middle part of the Pyrenees,and is bred from;

  • Aure cattle, draught oxen used to bring down timber from the mountains to the valleys.
  • St Girons cattle, a dairy cattle used to make a mountain cheese named bethmale, similar to Spanish breeds like the Tudanca. It is found only on small farms with less than 20 cows.


They are dark grey in color, with pink skin and long horns. Mature bulls weigh 800-900kg and cows weigh 500-600kg at 135cm tall.


Originally a multi-purpose breed, it is today used mainly for meat. The cow is a good mother, often producing one calf per year for more than 15 years. She is able to spend five months grazing in the mountains during summer. Cows give about 3000 kg of milk. Only a few farmers continue to use the milk to make bethmale cheese. A park near Bordeaux uses these cattle to graze a damp area where other breeds tend to become lame. This breed now has only 179 cows and 19 bulls because breeders prefer other breeds (holstein, blonde d'Aquitaine, Gasconne...). A small group of breeders with political from the "Midi-Pyrénées" region believe it is important to save old breeds and are trying to increase the number of cows. If the number of animals was greater, it would be a very good breed for crossing with bulls from Blonde d'Aquitaine or Limousin breed.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]

  • (French) [1] with photos.
  • (French) [2]