American Milking Devon Cattle
The American Milking Devon is a historically accurate representation of the cattle found in colonial settlements. Brought to Plimoth Colony in 1623 from Devonshire England by the pilgrims, they were well known in their homeland for beef, as oxen and Devonshire Cream.
George Washington preferred Devon cattle for milk, meat and draft power for his farm at Mount Vernon and you can still find them there today.
Contrary to the name, the American Milking Devon is not a dairy breed. While modern cattle have been genetically selected for either maximum dairy or beef production since the 1950's, the Milking Devon provides a natural balance between milk and beef production on grass alone.
The Milking Devon's trainability as oxen is what saved the breed form extinction. Surefooted with a quick gait, they were the oxen of choice for the Oregon trail and homesteaders. The centuries of selection for trainability, they are still used for logging in the mountains of New England today where their horns are valued for keeping the yoke from sliding off their head.
Breed Quick Facts
- Conservation Status: Critical
- Use: Oxen, beef, milk
- Temperament: Calm, intelligent, highly trainable, and fast on their feet
- Maternal Instincts: Easy calving attentive mothers with high butterfat milk for the calf
- Growth Rate: Slow growing - 24+ months to processing, fatten easily on grass
- Live weight: Bull weight 1400-1800 lbs, cow weight 1,000-1,200 lbs
- Harvest weight: 450-700 lbs dressed with high cutout percentage due to fine bones
- Frame Type: combination of both beef and dairy traits.