Breed of the Month Archive

Brandrood rund - Deep red cattle

Photo: Veeteelt
Herd-Book creation :1905
Number of breeding females (2007) : 454
Trend :Increasing
Location : Along the main rivers (Meuse, Rhine, IJssel) in the Netherlands
Local name :Brandrood rund

Breed description

The animals are red with white patterns on head, belly and tail tip and white socks. Sometimes a dark pigmented nose and blue tongue are seen. Especially bulls can have such a deep red head that it is nearly black. The breed is low demanding, has good adaptive qualities and is quiet. Good in fertility, calving ease and mother characteristics. Can cope with different weather conditions. Height of the cow is about 130 m and weight 550-600 kg.

History: origin of the breed and main region or country

From the beginning of the 20th century in the river areas of Meuse Rhine and IJssel, strong and quiet dual purpose breed cattle were bred. Within this Meuse-Rhine_IJssel (MRIJ) cattle the typical deep red colour pattern was very common, as shown by this picture of a bull born in 1903.

Photo from cited book

After the second world war, the colour pattern of MRIJ changed to more white and light red. Some farmers continued with own bulls and so their cattle became genetic isolated from the more white population. So the old type and colour were conserved. Nowadays this line has become a breed: Brandrood.

Trend of population

In 1978 there were about 120 Deep Red cattle. In 2001 a group was starting to care for the breed: Stichting, in 2005 Vereniging Het Brandrode rund. In 2007 there are 454 females and 66 males registered in the herdbook. Now the breed is growing. Most of the cattle are used for nature management. Some farmers milk Deep Red cattle.

Breeding, conservation and promotion

There is a active breed society. Research is done to prevent inbreeding and in 2001 a bull circle is established. Semen and some embryo's are conserved in the gene bank.


  • VeeteeltVlees, 2005 Vol:4 Nr:6 Pg:18 -19. Brandrode rund leeft op: Oudnederlands koeienras vormt jongste telg van Nederlandse Vleesveefederatie.
  • 100 jaar Koninklijke Vereniging Het Nederlandsche Rundvee-Stamboek, 1874-1974.


Het Brandrode Rund