The Fleckvieh breed
The Fleckvieh breed dates back to the early 19th century. From 1900 onward the breeding work was entirely characterized by pure breeding.
The herd-book in Southern Germany was closed and Fleckvieh continued to develop as an independent breed with triple purpose as the breeding aim: medium-framed cattle with a balanced emphasis on muscling, milk production and high work performance.
The Simmentaler/Fleckvieh breed is one of Europe's oldest breeds and, with its total population numbering over 41 million, it is the second largest breed in the world, only outnumbered by the Zebu breed. The Milking Fleckvieh are a proponent of that population, with the highest quantity of Milking Fleckvieh concentrated in portions of Germany, Austria, Italy, France and the Czech Republic. They were developed in the highland regions of Germany and Austria. They are a very popular breed for this part of the world, because of their adaptability to these harsher climatic conditions. They were developed to be highly productive on a mostly grass based diets and yet produce higher amounts of fat and protein for cheese making. In addition they had to be durable, hardy and be easy handling to work within a small family farm. They also needed excellent feet and legs to handle the mountainous regions they were asked to graze.
The Milking Fleckvieh cow in milk production shows a strong forehand and maintains sufficient muscling on back and hind legs to keep stability and health even during peak lactation. The body proportions are harmonious both when standing still and in motion. Milking Fleckvieh cattle are well characterized by their sound feet and legs.
Crossbreeding with Dairy Breeds
Fleckvieh can particularly score as breeding partner in regions and countries with a high proportion of dedicated dairy breeds. Many dairy producers are fighting health problems in their herds and have recognized that, given falling returns from milk, a supplementary income is required to keep their operations profitable.
The experience gathered over several years from operations with rotational or upgrading crossbreeding programs have resulted in advantages due in particular to:
- Improved Fertility
- Higher Fat and Protein percent's in the milk
- Reduced Mastitis and Somatic Cell Counts
- More hardiness and stronger cows are easy keepers
- Increase longevity in the offspring
- Posses good udder quality
- Excellent milking persistence during lactation
- Higher percent ratios of components for cheese production
- Lower veterinary costs that other breeds
- Improved fattening traits of calves
- Cull cows have higher carcass values than other breeds
- Perfect cross with Holstein in a 3-way composite
Milking Fleckvieh cows are healthy, hardy and very adaptable to different geographical and climatic conditions. Easy calving, good fertility and a long productive life are, besides the high performance potential for milk and beef, the basis for efficient production. Very good conformation of udders and feet and legs together with the medium body size of animals is ideal with respect to longevity and feed efficiency. No other breed combines both milk and beef traits in such a strong way as the Milking Fleckvieh.
- Strong $ dairy
- Good Milk Ability
- Strong Feet and Legs
- Healthy udders with low somatic cell count
- Strong and Functional Type
The Fleckvieh is being used more and more in grazing type dairy operations. Owners find the Fleckvieh and Fleckvieh crosses keep better condition and produce better that other dairy breeds.
Registering and Identifying Fleckvieh
The International Dairy Cattle Registry has been registering the Fleckvieh since 2013. We have worked diligently in getting the Fleckvieh breed recognized and working with the NAAB we were able to obtain the (FL) breed code for the Fleckvieh. Semen from US born Fleckvieh bulls has been exported to Europe.
Today from communication with the CDCB (Council on Dairy Cattle Breeding), there are over 305,000 animals in the CDCB database that are sire by Fleckvieh/Simmental bulls. This makes the Fleckvieh the third largest breed in the CDCB database only outnumbered by Holstein and Jersey.
If you would like to know more about registering or identifying Fleckvieh animals, please contact:
P.O. Box 118
Butler, MO 64730
or visit our website: Dairy Cattle Registry