Developing Your HighPark Cattle™ Herd

HighPark looking cattle can be bred by crossing shaggy breeds with animals with colored points. Here are some general guidelines and tips for creating your own line.

  1. If you are totally starting from scratch, beginning your breeding program with full blood stock will have significantly less genetic diversity with unexpected characteristics than animals of unknown heritage.  

  2. Spotting is genetically dominate to solid colored animals as black coloration is dominant to red.  Other web sites can offer a great more detail on color dominance.

  3. DB1 or Chondrodysplasia is a common gene from Dexter cattle that will shorten the long bones of a cow and subsequent stature.  Inheriting one DB1 gene will result in a healthy calf that will be totally healthy, but shorter than without the gene.  This is a common method to downsize cattle.   A double portion of this gene, inherited from both parents is 100% fatal as long bones will not develop and the pregnancy will terminate. Testing for this can be painlessly performed with genetic testing of a hair sample. 

  4. Initial crosses of a solid Highland to a Park will commonly yield a partially shaggy animal with colored points.  The trick will be to increase shaggy hair in subsequent generations while maintaining colored points and reducing the adult size of offspring.  You can jump start this process by purchasing breeding stock that will augment your existing herd characteristics.  Three or four generations of cross breeding seems to be minimum to dial in on HighPark breed characteristics.

  5. Good records are critical for any breeding program and should be of growing importance to prospective calf buyers to continue breed development.  Pedigree detail will be required for registration.  

  6. Connect with others who share the passion for HighPark Cattle™.  Buy, sell or trade to upgrade your herd.

  7. The success of HighPark Cattle™ as a breed will depend on the ability of breeders to promote the breed and work together. 

POTENTIAL

HighPark Cattle™ fit the sweet spot for smaller acre enthusiasts with a number of functions on the family farm. 

  • Docile, friendly cows. 

  • Smaller cows cost less to feed than their full-sized cousins.

  • Long hair keeps them warmer in the winter and keep bugs off in the summer. 

  • White coated cows are less prone to heat stress in the sun on a hot summer day and don't attract as many bugs as the dark coated animals.

  • Hardy, easy keeper, easy calving with long reproductive life

 

There is high pet market for the friendly HighPark Cow™.