Composition of the Breed
The Jamaica Hope cattle is derived from crossbred foundation tracing back to 1910. The breed composed of Jersey (0.80); Sahiwal (0.15) and Friesian (0.05) mix was declared in 1952. The Jamaica Hope cattle is the most dominant dairy breed in the island.
- Heat tolerant
- Tick tolerant
- Enhanced fertility
- Strong legs and feet
- Efficient converter of tropical forage
- High longevity (more than 5 lactations in most herds)
- Excellent dairy characteristics
- Mature 305-day yield – 3590 L
- First lactation yield - 3088 L
- Average daily yield on grass only – 7.6 Litres
- Calving interval - 411 days (on grass only)
- Average 1st calving - 34.2 months
- Butterfat - 4.88%
- Mature body weight - 385 – 420kg
- Breed production record > 10,000L in 305 days
- Yields per hectare up to 13,500 L/ha under grazing (4.6 cows/ha) supplemented with 1.5 ton concentrate per cow per year, recorded on commercial farm.
Holsteins are easily identified from the colour markings with colour patterns of black and white or red and white. There are currently two herd of Holstein in Jamaica; one is St Elizabeth and the other in St Thomas.
- Can be kept on grassland or in mixed farming systems with bi-annual grazing.
- A mature Holstein cow weighs about 1500 pounds and stand 58 inches tall at the shoulder.
- Females can be bred at 15 months
- High producing animals
The Jersey breed is one of the oldest dairy breeds. They are light in colour ranging from grey to dull black. The Jerseys has an ability to adapt to many kinds of climates, environments and management practices. Jersey cattle can be found in a number of herds across Jamaica.
- General small in size 400 – 450 kg
- Adaptable to a wide range if climatic and geographical condition.
- They are more heat tolerant
- Short calving interval
- Less susceptible to lameness due to their lightweight and their black hoof colour which makes their hooves very hard.
- Early maturity
- Excellent grazers
- Jersey milk contains 18% more protein, 20% more calcium, 25% more butterfat when compared with the average milk.
The Brown Swiss was originated was developed in the north – eastern parts of Switzerland. They are light in colour with creamy white muzzle; they have dark blue eye pigmentation which helps them to resist extreme solar radiation. Animals can be polled (no horns) or horned. The Brown Swiss dairy animals can be in the parish of Clarendon.
- Produce milk of good protein
- Has the closest protein/fat ration in milk produced
Composition of the Breed
The Girolando is one of the latest breed of dairy cattle that was introduced to the dairy herd in Jamaica. The Girolando was developed in Brazil with cross done between Holstein and Gyr breeds, 5/8 Holstein and 3/8 Gyr.
- Good milk production in hotter climate
- Thermoregulatory capacity
- Strong hooves and legs
- High reproductive efficiency
- Peak milk production at 10 years
- Interval between birth – 410 days
- Average production per lactation – 3600 kg in 305 days
- Butterfat- 4%