Livestock

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A sheep dog is guarding a flock of sheep. Sheep are commonly kept as livestock.

Livestock are domestic animals that are kept by people. Their uses are for meat, milking, wool, leather, or labor. Taking care of livestock is animal husbandry. Some types of livestock are: cattle, pigs, sheep, goats, and chickens. Chickens produce eggs; pigs produce meat; cattle, goats and sheep create milk, and sheep also create wool.[1] Horses, cattle, camels, llamas, water buffalo, and other large animals do work for people, such as pulling wagons and other vehicles.

The breeding, keeping alive, and killing of livestock is called animal husbandry. Animal husbandry have been practiced by humans for a long time. There are different animal husbandry practices used by different cultures. It is an important part of the economy and culture of many countries.

Intensive animal farming, which is sometimes called "factory farming" is mostly used today. 99% of livestock in the US are now raised with intensive animal farming.[2] Intensive animal farming increases the amount of things we can get from the livestock but it has also led to bad effects on animal welfare, the environment, and public health.[3]

Etymology[change | change source]

This Australian road sign uses "stock" for livestock.

Livestock as a word was first used between 1650 and 1660.[4] Today, cattle means domesticated bovines, while livestock now means domesticated animals.[5]

History[change | change source]

Animal husbandry started when humans stopped hunting and gathering and settled in farming communities. Animals are domesticated when the way they breed and live are controlled by humans. After a long time, the way they act and the way they look changes. Today, many farm animals cannot live in the wild.

The dog was domesticated in Europe and the Far East from about 15,000 years ago.[6] Goats and sheep were domesticated between 11,000 and 5,000 years ago in Southwest Asia.[7] Pigs were domesticated by 8,500 BC in the Near East and 6,000 BC in China.[8][9] Domestication of the horse dates to around 4000 BC.[10] Cattle have been domesticated since approximately 10,500 years ago.[11] Chickens and other poultry may have been domesticated around 7000 BC.[12]

Some common livestock[change | change source]

Image Animal Wild ancestor Where it was domesticated Uses
Nokota Horses cropped.jpg
Horse Tarpan Mongolia For meat, milk, hide, work, riding, and racing
Donkey in Clovelly, North Devon, England.jpg
Donkey African wild ass Africa For meat, milk, hide, work, and riding
Cow female black white.jpg
Cattle Aurochs Eurasia For meat, milk, hide, work
Gray Zebu Bull.jpg
Zebu Indian aurochs Eurasia For meat, milk, hide, work
Balinese cow.JPG
Bali cattle Banteng Southeast Asia For meat, milk, hide, work
Bos grunniens - Syracuse Zoo.jpg
Domestic yak Wild yak Tibet For meat, milk, hide, work
BUFFALO159.JPG
Water buffalo Wild water buffalo India and Southeast Asia For meat, milk, hide, work
Mithun.jpg
Gayal Gaur India and Malaysia For meat, milk, hide, work
Pair of Icelandic Sheep.jpg
Domestic sheep Mouflon Iran and Asia minor For meat, milk, and fleece
Capra, Crete 4.jpg
Domestic goat Wild goat Greece and Pakistan For meat, milk, and fleece
Caribou using antlers.jpg
Reindeer Reindeer Eurasia For meat, milk, hide, work
Chameau de bactriane.JPG
Bactrian camel Wild Bactrian camel Central Asia For meat, milk, hide, work, riding, and racing
Dromadaire4478.jpg
Arabian camel Thomas's camel North Africa and Southwest Asia For meat, milk, hide, work, riding, and racing
Pack llamas posing near Muir Trail.jpg
Llama Guanaco Andes For meat, milk, hide, and work
Corazon Full.jpg
Alpaca Guanaco Andes For meat, milk, hide, and work
Sow with piglet.jpg
Domestic pig Wild boar Eurasia For meat, hide
Նապաստակներ.jpg
Rabbit European rabbit Europe For meat, skins, Angora wool, and as a pet
Arjuna.jpg
Guinea pig Montane guinea pig Andes For meat and as a pet
Domestic-pigeon.jpg
Domestic pigeon Rock dove Old World For meat, eggs, and as homing pigeons
Feral Barbary Dove.jpg
Barbary dove African collared dove Africa For meat and eggs
Male and female chicken sitting together.jpg
Chicken Red junglefowl Southeast Asia For meat, eggs, and cockfighting
Black Spanish toms and hen.jpg
Domestic turkey Wild turkey Central America For meat and eggs
Taiwanese duck farm.jpg
Domestic duck Mallard Southeast Asia For meat and eggs
MuscovyDuck.jpg
Domestic Muscovy duck Muscovy duck Americas For meat and eggs
Domestic Goose.jpg
Domestic goose Greylag goose North Africa, Southern Europe, or Western Asia For meat and eggs
2014, Swan Goose-Chinese Goose, Anser cygnoides - panoramio.jpg
Chinese goose

African goose

Swan goose China For meat and eggs
Aqualand Aquaculture Farm - Curtin Immigration Detention Centre (5475162341).jpg
Domestic guineafowl Helmeted guineafowl Africa For meat and eggs

References[change | change source]

  1. "livestock | Definition, Examples, & Facts". Encyclopedia Britannica. Retrieved 2021-07-18.
  2. "USDA - National Agricultural Statistics Service - 2012 Census of Agriculture - List of Reports and Publications". www.nass.usda.gov. Retrieved 2021-07-18.
  3. Anomaly, J. (2015-11-01). "What's Wrong With Factory Farming?". Public Health Ethics. 8 (3): 246–254. doi:10.1093/phe/phu001. ISSN 1754-9973.
  4. "Definition of livestock | Dictionary.com". www.dictionary.com. Retrieved 2021-07-18.
  5. "Definition of LIVESTOCK". www.merriam-webster.com. Retrieved 2021-07-18.
  6. Larson, Greger; Bradley, Daniel G. (2014-01-16). Andersson, Leif (ed.). "How Much Is That in Dog Years? The Advent of Canine Population Genomics". PLoS Genetics. 10 (1): e1004093. doi:10.1371/journal.pgen.1004093. ISSN 1553-7404. PMC 3894154. PMID 24453989.
  7. Chessa, B.; Pereira, F.; Arnaud, F.; Amorim, A.; Goyache, F.; Mainland, I.; Kao, R. R.; Pemberton, J. M.; Beraldi, D. (2009-04-24). "Revealing the History of Sheep Domestication Using Retrovirus Integrations". Science. 324 (5926): 532–536. doi:10.1126/science.1170587. ISSN 0036-8075. PMC 3145132. PMID 19390051.
  8. Vigne, J.-D.; Zazzo, A.; Saliege, J.-F.; Poplin, F.; Guilaine, J.; Simmons, A. (2009-09-22). "Pre-Neolithic wild boar management and introduction to Cyprus more than 11,400 years ago". Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 106 (38): 16135–16138. doi:10.1073/pnas.0905015106. ISSN 0027-8424. PMC 2752532. PMID 19706455.
  9. Larson, Greger; Liu, Ranran; Zhao, Xingbo; Yuan, Jing; Fuller, Dorian; Barton, Loukas; Dobney, Keith; Fan, Qipeng; Gu, Zhiliang (2010-04-27). "Patterns of East Asian pig domestication, migration, and turnover revealed by modern and ancient DNA". Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 107 (17): 7686–7691. doi:10.1073/pnas.0912264107. ISSN 0027-8424. PMC 2867865. PMID 20404179.
  10. "Breeds of Livestock - Oklahoma State University — Breeds of Livestock, Department of Animal Science". afs.okstate.edu. Retrieved 2021-07-18.
  11. McTavish, E. J.; Decker, J. E.; Schnabel, R. D.; Taylor, J. F.; Hillis, D. M. (2013-04-09). "New World cattle show ancestry from multiple independent domestication events". Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 110 (15): E1398–E1406. doi:10.1073/pnas.1303367110. ISSN 0027-8424. PMC 3625352. PMID 23530234.
  12. Carr, Karen (2017-06-12). "Chicken history - Where are chickens from? India and China". Quatr.us Study Guides. Retrieved 2021-07-18.