Black Hereford (breed)
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The Black Hereford is a beef cattle breed, derived mainly from Hereford cattle (normally red and white), but with some mixture from black Angus cattle, resulting in black cattle with a white head and finching.
Like red Herefords, Black Herefords are becoming known for their feed efficiency and docile temperament. If a registered Black Hereford is crossed with a registered red Hereford and the resulting progeny is black, then it may be registered with the Black Hereford Association. The Black Hereford breed was formed to create cattle that would pass on the desirable traits of the red Hereford, but with black and white coloring. Like red Herefords, Black Herefords are often crossed with black Aberdeen Angus cattle to produce heterosis ("hybrid vigor") in the progeny, producing a type commonly known as the Black Baldy. The Black Herefords are usually the breeds Angus and Hereford combined.
The American Black Hereford Association was established as a non-profit corporation in 1994, by the late John Gage. The first Black Herefords to qualify for registration were recorded in 1997. In 2003 the Black Hereford received international breed designation by the National Association of Animal Breeds. By 2005 the association implemented its own EPD ratios for individual animals. These EPD (Expected Progeny Difference) ratios help producers use performance data collected from each animal and its offspring to accurately predict the performance of future offspring. The ABHA is experiencing strong growth throughout the United States with a surge in both breeder membership and animals registered.
Many cattle breeders desire the traits of the red Hereford cattle, but want black cattle, as black cattle tend to bring more money at market. Angus (black) are known for higher quality carcasses. Breeders like to cross Herefords, also known for good marbling, with Angus, even better quality grading cattle to get better meat quality and black hide if possible. Feed lot buyers will pay a premium for black hided cattle, because they have a better chance at a higher Quality grade (High Choice or Prime) than other hided cattle. Also, many breeders want to introduce Hereford type traits into their black cattle while maintaining the black color. The Black Hereford allows breeders to accomplish both of these goals. The Black Hereford is an efficient, docile cattle breed used mainly to produce beef.
- Black Hereford (crossbreed), a type widespread in Britain, arising out of the common use of red Hereford bulls to produce cross-bred beef cattle out of black and white Holstein-Friesian dairy cattle.
- Black Baldy, found in Australia and North America, another crossbred beef type, black with white head, also derived from the Hereford, but usually crossed with the Aberdeen Angus.
- Groningen, a traditional dairy breed from the Netherlands, black (or sometimes red) with a white head.