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Scottish Highland

The Scottish Highland cattle are coloured red, dun (grey), black, yellow or white. The hair is dense, long and only slightly curled. The head is characterized by the large width of the face and the great distance between the eyes- however a short distance between the eyes and mouth. The well- developed head of hair on the forehead and above the eyes is typical, as are the powerful, protruding horns. The ears are bushy and the legs are short compared to other cattle breeds. The Highland cattle should not look long-legged. The horns, which are widely spread and symmetrical, are another typical feature of Highland cattle.

Schottisches Hochlandrind

Direction of use

The Highland cattle are an extensive beef cattle. They are robust, resistant, cold-hardy, long-living, late maturing and easy calving with very good mothering abilities.

Statistics & Distribution

  • Austria: 13,100 animals
  • Breed proportion in Austria: 0.60%

The distribution of the Scottish Highland cattle focused on West and Central Scotland and the Hebrides. For some decades now they can be found in numerous herds in central and North Europe and North America.


Ø Beef performance:

   Daily weight gain (g)
  200 days 365 days
M 716.9 617.5
F 657.0 561.3

Control farms (Herds): 225

Height (cm, Ø): 120

Weight (kg, Ø): 550

Animals in control farms: 4,174

Registered cows: 1,221

Origin: Scotland (GB)


More than 200 years ago: Selective cattle breeding in Great Britain, this breed has since been bred without any crossbreeding of foreign blood

1884: Initial establishment of a Highland Beef Breeders` Association

1885: Registration of first Herd Book animals

1970s and 80s: First imports to Austria

1983: Establishment of the „Association of German Highland Cattle Breeders and Keepers e.V.“, Germany is the largest Highland cattle breeding region in mainland Europe