Corriente cattle are a breed of cattle descended from Spanish animals brought to the Americas in the late 15th century. They are primarily used today as sport cattle for rodeo events such as team roping and bulldogging (steer wrestling). Some breeders raise them for their meat, which is significantly leaner than the meat from most modern beef cattle.
Corrientes are fairly small cattle, with cows averaging well under 1,000 pounds (450 kg). They are lean, athletic, and have long upcurving horns. They are known as "easy keepers," as little human intervention required in their calving, and they eat significantly less than the big beef cattle. Like Texas longhorns (which many[who?] believe to be descended from Corrientes), they require less water and can live on sparse open range. Corrientes are also known as accomplished escape artists, as they can leap a standard barbed-wire fence and squeeze through fairly small openings.
Names for the breed differ. The official breed registry in the United States calls them Corriente cattle, which is the most common term in Northern Mexico. In other parts of Mexico, they are called Criollo or Chinampo cattle. They are closely related to Pineywoods and Florida Cracker cattle, two breeds from the Gulf Coast and Florida.
- The American Criollo Beef Association
- The North American Corriente Association
- Oklahoma State University cattle breed history