The Vordelwälder is a cattle breed (Bos taurus Linnaeus, 1758) native to the Black Forest, in the southwestern part of Germany, and is a dual-purpose breed for meat and milk production.

Systematics –
From a systematic point of view, it belongs to the Eukaryota Domain, Animalia Kingdom, Subgenus Eumetazoa, Superphylum Deuterostomia, Phylum Chordata, Subphylum Vertebrata, Infraphylum Gnathostomata, Superclass Tetrapoda, Class Mammalia, Subclass Theria, Infraclasse Eutheria, Superorder, Laurasiatheria, Clade Ungulata, Order Artiodactyla, Suborder Ruminantia, Infraorder Sheep, Family Bovidae, Subfamily Bovinae and therefore to the Genus Bos, to the Species Taurus and to the Vordelwälder.

Geographical and area distribution –
The Vordelwälder is a bovine breed bred mainly in the lower area of ​​the Southern Black Forest, a mountainous area of ​​Paleozoic origin located in the southwestern part of Germany, in the Land of Baden-Württemberg.

Origins and History –
This breed, native to South-West Germany, belongs to the branch of cattle with a red coat originating in the Black Forest.
Beginning in 1540, in this region, the presence of cattle ancestors of the Hinterwälder and Vordelwälder breeds had already been reported.
However, recognition as a breed occurred in 1850, but the genealogical register dates back to 1896.
Later, in the 60s, of the last century, it was crossed with Ayrshire bulls and subsequently with Red Holstein bulls, to increase milk production.
The Vordelwälder is one of 11 breeds that join the European Federation of Alpine System breeds.
In 2004, 4,800 cows and 225 bulls were registered. This breed is classified as a race under Class 2 observation.

Morphology –
The Vordelwälder is recognized for having the coat of intense red (which tends to brown) and white.
The head (which is often spotted) and the limbs are white;
The mucous membranes are clear; the horns are light in color, twisted up or down.
These are medium-large animals, with a height at the withers ranging from 128 to 135 cm, for females and 140 – 150 cm for males.
The live weight is 5.5 – 6.0 quintals for females and around 10.0 quintals for males.

Production aptitude –
The Vordelwälder is a dual-purpose breed that can give about 6,000 kg of milk with a 4% fat and 3.65% protein content.
Due to the composition and proportion of the various milk components, it is very suitable for cheese production.
It is a breed bred in areas with medium altitudes and in poorly tended pastures, where it exploits the natural mountain environment very well. It is therefore a rustic breed, a good grazer and walker, also thanks to its strong claws.
Another feature of this breed is its fertility and longevity. In general it is bred under better conditions than the other breed of cattle in the Black Forest which is the Hinterwälder.

Guido Bissanti

– Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
– Roberto Parigi Bini, 1983. Cattle breeds, Pàtron editore, Bologna.
– Daniele Bigi, Alessio Zanon, 2010. Atlas of native breeds. Cattle, horses, sheep and goats, pigs bred in Italy, Edagricole-New Business Media, Bologna.

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