(most common name)
(historical breed name):
The Ayrshire is named after the county of Ayrshire in Scotland and today can be found worldwide.
Originally, the Ayrshire color was black; their current red-and-white coat is the result of influence from Shorthorn cattle in the late 1700s and early 1800s. (There may also have been some Highland, Dutch and Alderney influence to improve the richness and color of the butter and milk.)
• 1814 - Ayrshire officially recognized as a breed by the Highland & Agricultural Society
• 1877 - Ayrshire breed society formed
• 1878 - Ayrshire herdbook established
At the time, there was much emphasis on their appearance and lyre-shaped horns (almost all Ayrshire cattle have now been dehorned). Milk production became more important starting in 1913.
The Ayrshire developed into a breed that is relatively small, but with the famous ‘dairy wedge’ conformation, which is:
• compact and symmetrical with a narrow chest
• sizable stomach
• excellent udder shape
This page was last updated on: 2023-05-14
You can also go to:
My Daily Cow® Scotland and read about other Scottish cattle breeds.
The Cow Wall® A-Z Cattle Breed Picture Reference to see other breeds of cattle in the world.