The Angus cattle or Aberdeen Angus have commonly been bred for their use in the production of beef. Originally developed in the country of Aberdeen and Angus Scotland the breed has been typically referred to as the Aberdeen Angus cattle by many countries all over the globe.
The Angus cattle breed are naturally polled (hornless), solid red or black in color, with some having a distinctive white udder. The Angus breeds found in the United States have been easily identified as two specific breeds of either the Red or Black Angus with the Black Angus observed as the more common of the two breeds used for its production of beef with a registered number of over three hundred thousand cows.
Hornless cattle found in Angus and the Aberdeen in the 18th century was known as Angus doddies. The founder of this breed was known as a man by the name of Hugh Watson as he was known for his selections of the best available black polled cows for his herds.
Hugh Watson’s favorite bull was known as the Old Jock, born in 1842 and sired by the Grey Breasted Jock which was awarded first place in the Scottish Herd Book.
The Old Granny, another of his favorites was born in the year 1842 with a sustained life of 35 years during which 29 calves were produced. Almost all of the recognized pedigrees of the Angus cattle today with the exception of the Black Meg 43 can be successfully traced back to these two specific animals.
The Australian breed Angus cattle was first introduced in the early 18th century to Tasmania and later to the southern mainland. The Angus breed today can be found within the majority of the Australian states and adjoining regions with over sixty three thousand registered calves.
The Angus cattle were first introduced within the United States on May 17th 1873 by a man known as George Grant who imported four bulls to the city known as Victoria in Kansas.
The bulls were displayed at the local fair where they were the subject of vast criticism and ridiculed as hornless black freakish animals. This resulted in the breeds to be only used in crossbreeding with no registered descendants to this date.
The offspring produced however found favor among cattle herders which resulted in the Angus cattle breeds being imported from Scotland to develop purebred herds.
The American Aberdeen Angus Association was formed in the city of Chicago in Illinois on the 21st of November in 1883 and was observed to publish their first herd book two years later in March 1st 1885.
The Associations name however was later amended to reflect a more shortened version and came to be known as the American Angus Association registering both the black and red breeds without any formal distinction.
The American Angus Association in 1917 made the decision to discontinue the registering of colored animals including the red breed in their attempts to effectively promote solid black breed of the cattle. The Red Angus breeds were observed to be bred as a direct result from recessive gene traits during the breeding process.
This led cattle breeders to begin their collection of the Red Angus cattle thus forming the Red Angus Association of America in 1954. Several other countries involved in breeding the Angus cattle such as Canada and Great Britain during that time and today have still been observed as using one herd book to register both the red and black breeds.
Angus cattle have been globally used in crossbreeding as a means of reducing the instances of dystocia in cattle breeds. They have in addition been used as a successful genetic dehorner in cattle breeding which is made possible due to the dominant trait of the polled gene during crossbreeding.
Between 2003 through to 2004 the American fast food industry spearheaded a publicly based campaign to promote the beef produced from the Angus breed as a superior quality meat.
This led to the creation of the Back Yard Burger, the first ever fast food product sold on a massively large scale in the United States as early as 2002.
Successful food chains such as the Canadian based Harvey’s and the American Based Hardee’s have been known to include the Angus Burgers as one of their prime orders within their menu.
McDonalds in 2006 began experimenting with the Angus beef in their hamburgers in many of their locally based fast food locations within the United States which received widespread review positive customer reactions.
This prompted the decision to begin selling the Angus beef hamburgers at all their locations Nationwide in July of 2009. The McDonald’s chain located in Australia started including selective variations of the Angus beef hamburgers fondly known as the Mighty Angus and the Grand Angus in all their fast food stores in that country.
In 1978 the American Angus Association implemented the “Certified Angus Beef” to effectively promote their conception that the Angus beef produced was and today is a superior quality beef as opposed to the beef produced from other breeds of cattle.
Persons interested in purchasing Angus cattle to start their Angus herd can often locate calves sold on the local market to be grown for beef production. There are however two types of cow-calf operations. These are generally referred to as commercial stock and seed stock.
The commercial stock typically involves a cross bred variety of cows, the majority of which are not purebred. The seed stock which would be preferred respective to cattlemen interested in the raising of Angus cattle, involves the raising of a purebred herd and of the two has been observed as the favorite of most if not all herders.
Angus calves can be purchased from a variety or Angus breeders including:
- The Gill Red Angus Ranch which was founded in the late 1960’s.
- BM Angus formed in 2001 and located in York, Nebraska.
- Spring Cove Ranch which has been noted as the first registered Aberdeen Angus cattle breeder in 1919 located in Bliss, Idaho.
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