Talk:Highland cattle

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Good articleHighland cattle has been listed as one of the Agriculture, food and drink good articles under the good article criteria. If you can improve it further, please do so. If it no longer meets these criteria, you can reassess it.
Did You Know Article milestones
May 1, 2015Good article nomineeListed
July 11, 2015Peer reviewReviewed
June 3, 2015Peer reviewReviewed
July 30, 2015Featured article candidateNot promoted
Did You Know A fact from this article appeared on Wikipedia's Main Page in the "Did you know?" column on May 18, 2015.
The text of the entry was: Did you know ... that a herd of Highland cattle is known as a fold?
Current status: Good article

Texas Longhorn cattle[edit]

I reformatted the external links and added a bit more information. The reason I started a talk page, though, was the information about Texas Longhorn cattle being derived from Highlanders. I can't find a citation for that, and it's in direct contradiction to what the Longhorn Wikipedia article says. If anyone can cite a reputable source, we can put that info back. - Gary D Robson 19:34, 27 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Hairy coos! SOOOO CUTE! jengod 05:15, 3 April 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Nuk Nuk!

Added Link[edit]

Is it possible to ad to the links page of Scottish Highland Cattle. Independent Highland Cattle Breeders Academy is a New Zealand Society established to record the pedigrees for its members of their Highland Cattle. Thank you for your consideration. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 19:06, 7 April 2007 (UTC).Reply[reply]

Site looks suitable, added. Bobbacon 21:20, 23 April 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Highland Cattle in the Andes![edit]

Does anyone have any information on Highland Cattle living in the Andes (HCS UK ) I would love to see some pictures of these or know how they are getting on, where they came from or even how many are there? I would also be interested in learning of other Folds in obscure place in the World that these amazing cattle call home! Judemac 16:49, 21 April 2007 (UTC)JudemacdReply[reply]

Hi there! I´m adding pictures from Exposición Rural Argentina 2009. --Exepm (talk) 00:19, 29 January 2010 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Picture captions[edit]

Highlands are not my breed, but as a cattle farmer I'm reasonably familiar with the differences in appearance between bulls, cows and steers. Without being able to see the animals' "bits", it's not possible to be certain, but I'm sure the labels as they were were wrong, so I've changed them. The one now labelled "cow" ("Highland cow.JPG") is certainly not a bull, and could be a cow (adult female) or possibly an ox (an adult castrated male; a mature steer): it's mature, because the horns are well-grown, but it does not have enough masculine features to be an entire bull (the features are quite delicate, the horns are up-sweeping). The one now labelled "bull" ("Cow highland cattle.jpg") might possibly be a very heavily built and overweight ox, but the thick, relatively short horns (which are not upward-sweeping), the very muscular neck and very broad head make it look like a bull (adult, uncastrated male). It's certainly not a cow. The photo files themselves are both named as "cow", but I fear this is the layman's generic "cattle-singular" term, not an accurate description of type. Unless anyone has direct knowledge of these individual animals, I think my labels are the best we can do. If anyone disagrees, or is unhappy with a definite label for an unknown animal, I suggest we just don't label them at all, or change the pictures for ones of known type. --Richard New Forest (talk) 21:03, 19 May 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Your explanations make sense to me. I think most people (like me) are just ignorant and welcome corrections from a professional. Thanks for your effort! Rror (talk) 21:28, 19 May 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Highland Cows[edit]

Just to say that Highland cows have also been imported in Switzerland, in the Bernese Oberland. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:51, 30 August 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]


A comment on size would be nice. Kevink707 (talk) 15:14, 12 April 2010 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The Dutch Wikipedia says a mature bull can weight up to 800 kilos, and a cow up to 500. Besides that, it also says they can get 18 years old and their gestation varies between 95 and 112 days, making them able to give birth to up to 15 calves.

— Preceding unsigned comment added by Seth Knops (talkcontribs) 14:20, 30 September 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]


" well as retaining its undoubted appeal as one of the most handsome beasts that could adorn any landscape." Really? I'll be, uh, removing that particularly non-neutral fragment, someone might want to make a pass and remove any other clearly PoV statements. -- (talk) 23:15, 20 September 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]

GA Review[edit]

This review is transcluded from Talk:Highland cattle/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Reviewer: Cwmhiraeth (talk · contribs) 10:41, 26 April 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]

First reading[edit]

Here are a few preliminary comments:

  • The lead section is very brief. It should provide a summary of the information provided elsewhere in the article.
  • The word "cattle" is a plural word meaning a number of bovine animals, and the caption "A Highland cattle in the Highlands" for example, uses the word wrongly.  Done
  • The article needs a "description" section.  Done
  • Several of the things mentioned in the infobox need expansion in the text.  Done
  • The second paragraph of the "The breed" section has no citations.  Done
  • The section "Commercial use" has no citations.  Done
  • The sections "Commercial use" and "Commercial success" immediately attracted my attention. They are written in a rather sophisticated style, different from other parts of the article, and seem to be a copyvio of this site, or alternatively they both may be copyvios of some previously-existing work.  Done
    • I think the article needs quite a lot of improvement before it will reach the standards required for a GA. The copyvios are the most serious fault. Cwmhiraeth (talk) 11:01, 26 April 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • I can see that the copyvios predate your involvement with the article. Cwmhiraeth (talk) 12:28, 26 April 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • What do you mean by description? Is is 'the breed? TheMagikCow (talk) 14:15, 26 April 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I meant the breed characteristics - the sort of things dealt with in the articles Murray Grey cattle and Belted Galloway. Such things as their size, build, coat, horns, growth rate, age to maturity, temperament, milking ability, etc. Cwmhiraeth (talk) 17:44, 26 April 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Yes indeed, the article is much improved. A few further points
  • I doubt the first image is a bull. It has no ring in its nose and looks more like a heifer or steer to me. See the bull illustrated on this page for comparison.  Done
  • The NWHCA site just mentioned has a bit more information on the history of the breed.  Done
  • The black cattle pictured are probably not bulls either.  Done
  • The "Shows" section is hardly worth having but if you want to keep it, there is a typo in the last sentence.  Done
  • The "External links" section lists a number of countries with highland cattle societies and it would be good to include information in the article on other countries where they are kept.  Done
  • References should go immediately behind punctuation marks without an intervening space.  Done
  • @Cwmhiraeth: Fingers Crossed! TheMagikCow (talk) 15:40, 28 April 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]

GA criteria[edit]

  • I have done some copyediting and changed the capitalisation, and I think the article is now sufficiently well-written and complies with MOS guidelines on prose and grammar, structure and layout.
  • The article uses many reliable third-party sources, and makes frequent citations to them. However, the citations should be fuller (I have done a couple) and an accessdate should be given for the date you visited websites.
  • I do not believe the article contains original research.
  • The article covers the main aspects of the subject and remains focussed.
  • The article is neutral.
  • The article is stable.
  • The images are relevant and have suitable captions, and are properly licensed.

Heat tolerance[edit]

I'm sorry but this section in Highland cattle is really totally inappropriate. Certainly it "illustrates that they are not evolved for hot climates" - but who would have thought that they were? It's amazing to me that that particular study was done, but it was - yet it's a primary source, and illustrates exactly why we're asked to instead base our work on: "...reliable, published secondary sources and, to a lesser extent, on tertiary sources...". This is one study, whereas if a secondary source existed it would be an aggregate of many such studies, and provide a more reliable and readable result. The mere fact that such a secondary article does not exist is a hint that no-one else has bothered to study whether a cattle beast bred in a cold climate and covered in shaggy hair does poorly when stuck into a hot one and compared to a vastly different animal described as "well adapted to withstanding high temperatures". Even describing the Highland as having a "lack of heat tolerance" is stretch - should we be editing the Zebu article to say that that breed has a "lack of cold tolerance"?

(In addition, the primary source, and therefore the info in this section, is hilariously specific - do our readers really need to know that: "they decreased their feed consumption by 31% and oxygen consumption by 19%". This the problem with primary sources, they are written for scientists, and make little sense until compared and contrasted with each other). Snori (talk) 19:20, 13 February 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I must say I am very much tempted to agree. These sorts of studies are usually conducted by animal scientists to give baseline data on extremes of adaptation. It would be much more informative and helpful to the reader if we were to present comparisons of heat/cold tolerance of other Bos indicus cattle (e.g. Herefords) and Highlands (if these studies exist).DrChrissy (talk) 19:42, 13 February 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Now replaced with "Cold tolerence" and re-worded etc. Snori (talk) 04:52, 15 February 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

nicknames - whose? where?[edit]

Highland cattle are not nicknamed "fluffy cow" or "hairy cow" in Scotland, as far as I have heard in 50+ years living in Scotland. No provenance or evidence is given for the claim, so I suspect this is just personal or family idiolect being presumed to be general, maybe because of its obviousness. In Scotland a "hairy cow" could describe either a Highland or another Scottish breed, the Galloway. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:14, 7 March 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]


No intention of starting an edit war, Chrissy, we are both too smart for that. I am somewhat mystified as to how the fact that Highland cattle - plus its 4 close cousins - can trace their lineage back directly to a British aurochs dated to 6,750 years before present is irrelevant nor of interest to a reader. Additionally, that its genome has been introgressed by the said aurochs. If you had have followed the link to the article on introgression, you would have discovered that we are not talking about "crossing", nor about "hybrids", this is about the coo still carrying part of the genome of its direct ancestor - genomically we have the two of them in there. (A rough analogy would be making leek and potato soup but nobody boiled the water - it is still possible to tip out the cold water and separate the mixture back into potato and leek.) Even now, when we look into the coo's eyes, are we looking at a coo or an aurochs eyes? If we pat its fur, which did it come from? The aurochs genome has been mapped, the breed's genome is about to be mapped and the back-breeding begin, and shortly we will see a Highlander standing beside its ancestor, the aurochs. How that is irrelevant or not of interest to a reader is beyond my understanding. I will be interested to read what others think. Regards,  William Harris |talk  08:57, 1 November 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Thanks for opening up this discussion. First, can you please confirm that the term "coo" you use means "cow" - I have not encountered the useage of that term in this context and had to go searching for it.
My major concern with the section is that it is overly technical/detailed for individual breed articles. I think it would be better placed perhaps at the Auroch article and a 2-3 sentence summary left on the individual breed articles with a definite indication of why it is relevant there. DrChrissy (talk) 21:32, 1 November 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Coo - refer to the first sentence of the article. First you undo my edit with the entry of "I do not see the relevance", but then here you claim here that it is "overly technical/detailed" - which of the two is it? I have provided a reputable cited source that refers to highland cattle, you undid my edit and so now I believe that it is appropriate that you identify in what way it is "irrelevant". Regards,  William Harris |talk  20:13, 3 November 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Your edit was relevant in that the auroch was involved in the evolution of the highland cattle, but that can be summarised in just one or two sentences. The remainder of your edit is, in my opinion, irrelevant to this article. DrChrissy (talk) 20:23, 3 November 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Hamitic :Longhorn can be linked to this?[edit]

Hamitic Cattle can be linked to this?

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Popular culture: unofficial national animal of Scotland[edit]

Can we put something to indicate that the Highland cattle is an unofficial national animal of Scotland? Highland cattle are widely seen, certainly in tourism literature about Scotland and is used as a mascot of the country. 159753 (talk) 21:00, 27 April 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]