Domestic cow

Latin Name
Bos taurus

Class
Mammals

Order
Artiodactyla

Description

Large, heavy mammals that vary in size and appearance. There are many breeds of cows, the most common dairy breed, Holstein, is on display at the Farm-in-the-Zoo. Black-and-white Holsteins are most prevalent, though red-and-white are also represented. They are the largest dairy cows, producing the greatest volume of milk.


 

Range

Domesticated around the world


Status

Thriving


Habitat

Domestic environments-grasslands, fields and other pastures provided by keepers.


Niche

Cows feed primarily on hay, digesting it in fore-stomachs that enable them to break down high levels of cellulose.


Life History

Conditions and lifespans vary for domestic cattle depending on the conditions of their domestication and their usage, be it for milk production or beef.


Special Adaptations

Cows' coloration varies by individual. Their spots are unique, just like our fingerprints.



Lincoln Park Zoo Exhibit