Red Poll Cattle: Characteristics, Uses & Full Breed Information

The Red Poll cattle are a dual purpose breed which are suitable for both milk and meat production. They developed in England in the latter half of the 19th century.

The Red Poll cattle breed is actually the result of a cross of Suffolk Dun dairy cattle and the Norfolk Red beef cattle breeds.

The parent Suffolk breed, which was used for developing this breed was also polled, but the Norfolk cattle breed had horns. And the gene for horns in the Norfolk cattle was bred out in the Red Poll cattle.

Previous name of this breed was ‘Norfolk and Suffolk Red Polled‘ cattle, and the first herd book complied in the year of 1874. The breed was named ‘Red Polled‘ in 1883, and then finally ‘Red Poll‘ in 1888. And the Red Poll Cattle Society was formed in 1888.

The breed was imported into Australia in the mid 19th century. And they are now used primarily for meat production in Australia. The Red Poll cattle were introduced to the United States in 1873 by G. P. Taber of New York State.

And the breed was first brought to New Zealand in the year of 1898. But until 1917 a herd was not established in New Zealand. Read some more information about this cattle breed below.

Red Poll Cattle Characteristics

The Red Poll cattle are medium sized animals with red, or preferably deep red colored coat. There are white color available, only on the tail switch and udder. They have no horns and are naturally polled.

The bulls on average weight about 816 kg. And average body weight of the cows is around 550 kg. Photo and info from Wikipedia.
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Red Poll cattle are dual purpose animals. They are used for both milk and meat production.

Special Notes

The Red Poll cattle are strong and long lived animals. They are very adaptable and have quiet dispositions. The breed is an excellent choice for rotational grazing and other systems where ease of handling is required. The breed is suitable for both milk and meat production.

The cows produce good quality milk which is high in protein and butterfat, and they are very suitable for small-scale or home dairy production. Review full breed profile of this breed in the following table.

Red Poll Cattle | Breed Profile

Breed Name Red Poll
Other Name Red Polled, Norfolk and Suffolk Red Polled cattle
Breed Purpose Milk, meat
Special Notes Noted for quality milk and meat production
Breed Size Medium


Bulls Average 816 kg
Cows Average 550 kg
Climate Tolerance All Climates
Coat Color Red or deep red
Horned No
Milk Yield Good
Rarity Common
Country/Place of Origin England

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