The Brown Swiss is an increasingly popular dairy breed renowned for its excellent legs, and locomotion. The cows are adaptable and hardy, suiting modern commercial systems. A handsome breed, they are seen as the whole package; the cows deliver excellent milk yields across a flat lactation curve, leading to fewer metabolic problems than other dairy breeds. The Brown Swiss is also a popular crossing breed, with great improver potential, particularly for extreme dairy types.
Most dairy historians agree that Brown Swiss or Braunvieh cattle are the oldest of all dairy breeds. The beautiful brown cows were developed in the north-eastern part of Switzerland. Bones found in the ruins of Swiss lake dwellers date back to probably 4000 BC, and have some resemblance to the skeleton of today’s Brown Swiss cow. Documentary evidence shows that the Benedictine monks residing at the Einsiedeln Monastery started breeding these cattle as early as approximately 1000 years ago.
The canton of Schwyz was the scene of most of the early improvement of the Brown Swiss, and in Switzerland the breed is often referred to as Schwyer or Brown Schwyzer.
All the cantons in which the breeds originated are inhabited by German speaking people, and apparently large cattle were brought in from Germany to improve the cattle of Switzerland, which until about 1860 were often lacking in size. And for that fact the Swiss Brown is also known as Braunvieh.
Many people refer to Braunvieh as Brown Swiss and want to know the difference between the two. Brown Swiss dairy cattle were in fact developed from the Braunvieh beef cattle. Braunvieh was an extremely good milking beef breed and, many years ago, some animal breeders selected the best milking Braunvieh and began breeding these selected individuals for milk production. After many generations the dairy type was developed, and thus the Brown Swiss dairy cattle.
The Brown Swiss or Braunvieh is light brown in colour with a creamy white muzzle and dark noze, dark-blue eye pigmentation which helps the breed to resist extreme solar radiation. Brown Swiss cattle have been bred horned and polled, when horned the horns are short and white growing dark towards the top. Brown Swiss are robust, a prolific breeder, long-lived, strong, adaptable, and very well-balanced in build with good hooves and limbs.
This breed has a double utility as they are used for dairy and beef purposes providing good milk and meat output.
Milk producers throughout the world are adding Brown Swiss to their herds daily, because of the good milk, protein, and butter fat production. Their correct feet and legs allow them to stay in the milking herd for more lactations than many other breeds.
The milk of the Brown Swiss cow is coveted by cheese makers. The volume of milk plus the protein produced by Brown Swiss makes the best milk for the fluid and cheese markets. Brown Swiss breeders benefit from the best fat-to-protein ratio of any of the dairy breeds for production of most cheeses.
Features of Brown Swiss Cow
Further data from the US Meat Animal Research Center shows why Braunvieh and Braunvieh-cross females make such good mothers. The date reveals that they rebreed and calve on a regular basis and milk sufficiently to produce heavy calves at weaning.
Increased Calf Survival: 10 to 15%
Increased growth of crossbred calves: 4 to 11%
Increased weaning weight due to more milk: 4 to 11%
Increased Fertility: 10 to 15%
Performance: lactation, based on 305 days with a fat content of 4.19% and 3.55% protein:
Average milk production 6554 kg / lactation about 305 days. They are known for late maturity and thus have a strong increase in production over several lactations.
Age: 18 to 30 months on the day of delivery.
Weight: Adult cow between 650 and 700 kg, with a height of 135 to 140 cm. A bull can be between 145 and 155 cm tall with a weight of 1050 to 1125 kg.
Prices of Brown Swiss Cow
$300.00 – $1,100.00