Irish Moiled

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The Irish Moiled is a rare cattle breed from Ireland. It is a dual-purpose breed, producing both beef and milk. It originated in County Leitrim, County Sligo, and County Donegal, but the breed is now found throughout in Northern Ireland. There are also breeders in the Republic of Ireland


"Moile" (an Anglicization of the Irish language "Maol") refers to the dome on the poll or hornless head. The breed is typically red in colour marked by a white line or 'finching' on the back and under parts, but can vary from white with red ears to nearly all red. A medium sized breed, a mature cow typically weighs 650 kg.

A breed society was established in 1926 to improve the breed, but by the 1970s less than thirty cows were left in two herds. In 1982 the society was re-established with help from the Rare Breeds Survival Trust and Liverpool University, and set up a DNA testing program to verify the pedigrees. In 2008, a conservation strategy was launched to maintain the genetic base of the breed. There are now some 140 breeders including 40 in mainland Britain. The United Kingdom government makes incentive payments to farmers conserving the breed in Northern Ireland

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