“Oreos,” “panda cows” and “belties.” These are all common nicknames for the Belted Galloway, a breed of cattle known for their distinguishable black and white markings.
Visitors to the Nashville Zoo can now view a pair of the heritage breed cattle as part of the zoo’s Grassmere Historic Farm display. Austin Peay State University donated the cows from its herd that is used studies on animal health, genetics and reproduction.
“Austin Peay State University is fortunate to have a sizable herd of Belted Galloways that was originally donated to us by J&N Enterprises for our pre-veterinary medicine and animal science students," said Dr. Don Sudbrink, associate professor and Chair of Austin Peay’s Agriculture Department and Environmental Education Center. “The zoo's educational focus on heritage animals gave us an opportunity to provide another avenue for more people to learn about this unique breed."
The cattle will join other heritage breeds at Nashville Zoo’s historic farm including Silver Laced Wyandotte chickens, two Milking Devon cattle and a Percheron draft horse.
“Heritage breeds are livestock breeds that were popular in the past because of their multi-purpose existence,” said Tori Mason, farm manager at the zoo. “Due to changes in consumer behavior, the popularity of these breeds diminished. Just as our historic Croft Home is a representation of life during the 1800s, the barnyard gives our guests an opportunity to see animals that were around during this time as well.”
Belted Galloway cattle were first imported to the United States in 1940s from Galloway, Scotland. This breed is sometimes known as “belties” or “panda cows” for their distinguishable black and white markings.
For more information about Nashville Zoo, call 615-833-1534 or visit www.nashvillezoo.org .