Numbers of the Deoni breed of cattle are on the wane and apathetic State governments are to blame. Once popular in the erstwhile Nizam State, which includes areas of Telangana, Maharashtra and Karnataka, the breed gets its name from Deoni taluk in Latur district of Maharashtra. In the district, the animal is more popular at Zaheerabad, Kohir, Nyalakal, Manoor, Narayanakhed, Peddashankarampet, Andol and Sadashivapet, where the bull is used for ploughing fields, while the cow is reared for milk. However, farmers are increasingly choosing other breeds over the Deoni variant, as the yield of milk is lesser. A Deoni cow yields three litres of milk a day, compared with eight litres from the Holstein Friesian (HF) breed, six litres from Jersey, and four litres from Murrah. On the other hand, feed cost of the Deoni breed is Rs.20 per cattle per day, while it is Rs.25 for Murrah, Rs.30 for Jersey and Rs.40 for HF breeds.
Medical costs incurred are similar. Animal Husbandry Department officials say that while the annual sum would be only Rs.200 per animal in the case of Deoni cattle, it is anywhere between Rs.500 and Rs.800 for other breeds. The male Deoni cattle can work for six to eight hours in the field as its physical condition is more suited to the area, whereas those of other breeds are not as hardy. The mortality rate of the calf and adult was also found to be negligible, even after incidence of diseases. “The breed was found to be hardy and well adapted to tropical drought-prone areas,” said a report on Deoni cattle by the National Bureau of Animal Genetic Resources.
Features of Deoni Cow
It is also known as “Dongarpati” or “Dangari” or “Deccani” or “Surti”. It is native to Bidar district of Karnataka and Latur district of Maharashtra state. It is a dual purpose breed. It is a medium sized animal which have white body having irregular black color spots on it. It has thin and loose skin, broad head, thick and medium sized horns, deep and wide chest and long ears which are drooping. The cow gives an average of 1135ltr milk per lactation period. The milk contains 4.3% fat content. The bull of this breed has an average weight of 6qtl and cow has 4.5qtl.
Uses/benefits of Deoni Cow
Deoni is cattle is known for its drought capacity, heat tolerance, disease resistance and it can thrive in harsh climatic conditions. A study on the performance of Deoni cattle in Northern Telangana has revealed that the Deoni cattle has a wide performance potential which can further be improved over a period of time through proper selection and management in the breeding tract of Telangana state.
The Deoni is a medium-sized animal which resembles the Gir in physical structure to a large extent. It is found in three colour variations viz. Wannera (clear white with black colour at the sides of the face), Balankya (clear white with black spots on the lower side of the body) and Shevera (white body with irregular black spots). The body is moderately developed and symmetrical with distinct muscles. Head is masculine, alert, broad and slightly convex. The colour of the head is black and white in Wannera and Shevera and completely white in the Balankya strain. The forehead is prominent, broad, slightly bulged and white in all the strains; ears are long and drooping with slightly curved tips; horns are medium, thick, apart and emerge from the sides of the poll; tips of the horns are blunt; and eyes are prominent, bright and alert with black eyebrows.
The hump is massive and well developed in males and small in females. The neck is short, strong and well developed. Dewlap is thick, pendulous, and muscular with folds. It is more pendulous in males than in females. The chest is deep and wide. The skin of these animals is thick and loosely attached to the body. The tail is long reaching below the hock with black and white switch. The udder is well attached and medium in size with squarely placed black teats. Bulls are characterized by blackish scrotums of a good size. The animals are docile and calm. The hair is soft and short. The cows have a fairly well-developed udder. The hooves are well-made and shapely and of a black color. The body is massive and upstanding with considerable depth and gives an appearance of strength. (ANSI)
Horn length, ear length, head length, chest girth, body length and height averaged 17.61, 26.18, 49.82, 151.82, 120.11 and 122.22 cm in adult cows and 19.97, 26.67, 53.68, 163.55, 129.59 and 134.36 cm in bullocks.
- Height Male: 135–140 cm:167; Female: 122 cm:167;
- Other namesDongari; Dongarpatti; Devni:167; Devani:167; Surti:167;
- Weight Male: 590 kg:167; Female: 295 kg:167;
- Rank Breed
- Horn Status Horned
- Origin India
Prices of Deoni Cow