Breed (breed)

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A domestic animal breed is a population of a domestic animal that can be distinguished from other populations in terms of characteristics such as body structure , characteristics as a livestock and behavior , and these characteristics are inherited. Cultivated races, land races and transitional races are distinguished according to the degree of breeding . Domestic breeds correspond to the varieties in cultivated plants . Farm animal breeds are sub-units of the domestic animal breeds.

Development of the concept of breed in connection with domestic animals

Domestic animals show great intraspecific variability . For a long time, the intraspecies differences in domestic animals were treated like differences between species . Taxonomic units were formed within the respective domestic animal species . While Linnaeus assumed the immutability of species in the 18th century and viewed these as created by God, later attempts were made to explain the great variability of domestic animals through lineages. Race formation was understood as a process comparable to the formation of species and subspecies in wild animals .

In numerous current breed definitions, reference is made to Wolf Herre , who formulated in 1961: “Races are sub-units of domestic animals of a species that differ from one another more strongly in several hereditary characteristics. They are delimited on a subjective basis. ”And underlined that the term should only be used for subdivisions of pets. Some authors point to the relationship between breeds and targeted selection by humans and certain breeding goals. Sometimes it is pointed out that there is no natural race formation. Other authors, on the other hand, also use the term for natural feature differentiation. Although used Charles Darwin the term "selection" in the same way as in the breeding, speaking of "natural selection" ( natural selection speaks), but he used instead of "race" ( race ) the term type ( species ).

The groups of domesticated animals of the same species defined as races have a common breeding history, but the designation race - in contrast to species - cannot be clearly defined genetically. The economically most important breeds of livestock consist of different breeding populations, which are cultivated separately in different countries. The degree of exchange of breeding animals between these populations also determines their genetic bond, which is sometimes more, sometimes less strong.

Classification of breeds according to the degree of breeding work

Land races

Land races, primitive races, natural races, or geographic races are primarily domestic animal breeds that have arisen through natural selection . Under environmental and climatic influences, they emerged in a certain, mostly remote or less favorable habitat . They are better adapted to the conditions in this area, therefore more frugal and more resistant, but less productive than cultivated breeds. They usually also have greater genetic diversity than this. In some cases, they form the starting population for cultivated breeds.

Transitional races

Transitional breeds or “refined land races” are domestic animal breeds that have emerged from land races and are somewhat more strongly influenced by breeding. They have partially retained the advantages of the land races, but are more productive than them.

Cultural races

Cultivated breeds or breeding breeds are breeding breeds of domestic animals that have been bred for economic needs or hobbies and are constantly being optimized for their intended use through artificial selection. In livestock breeding , economic performance characteristics, such as yield, are the primary breeding goal ; high-performance cultivated breeds form the basis of highly developed agricultural production. In amateur breeding, on the other hand, characteristics such as body structure or coat color and drawing are in the foreground. These are set out in breed standards as a breeding goal. Culture races are often divided into lofts and lines . Cultural races are usually more demanding than land races.

See also

Lists of breeds in mammals:

Lists of poultry breeds:



Further reading:

  • Martin Haller: Rare domestic and farm animal breeds . Graz / Stuttgart 2000, ISBN 3-7020-0893-4 .
  • Hans Hinrich Sambraus: Atlas of the farm animal breeds. 250 races in words and pictures . 4th ext. Edition. Stuttgart 1994, ISBN 3-8001-7308-5 .
  • Agricultural animal breeds . Berlin 1930 (6 plates).
  • Simon von Nathusius : Atlas of the races and forms of our domestic animals . Stuttgart (4 parts, 1904-1906).

Used literature:

  • B. Mayr: Breed development, commercial breeding and preservation of genetic diversity . In: Horst Kräusslich (Ed.): Tierzüchtungslehre . 4th edition. Eugen Ulmer, Stuttgart 1994, ISBN 3-8001-4371-2 , pp. 56-66 .
  • Rolf Sauermost, Doris Freudig u. a. (Ed.): Lexicon of Biology. In fourteen volumes . tape 8 : Cape chestnut to Lynx . Spektrum Akademischer Verlag, Heidelberg 2002, ISBN 3-8274-0333-2 .

Individual evidence

  1. a b c Mayr, 1994 (p. 56).
  2. Ekkehard Wiesner, Rolf Berg, Regine Ribbeck: Dictionary of Veterinary Medicine . VEB Gustav Fischer Verlag, Jena 1978.
  3. a b Erik Zimen: The dog - descent, behavior, man and dog. Goldmann, 1992, ISBN 3-442-12397-6 , pp. 140 ff.
  4. Erik Zimen: The dog - descent, behavior, man and dog. Goldmann, 1992, ISBN 3-442-12397-6 , p. 24 ff.
  5. Wolf Herre , Manfred Röhrs: Pets - seen from a zoological perspective. Gustav Fischer Verlag, 1990, ISBN 3-437-20446-7 , p. 27.
  6. Alfons William, Henner Simianer: animal breeding. Basic knowledge Bachelor . Ulmer (UTB), Stuttgart 2011, ISBN 978-3-8252-3526-0 , Basic Concepts (Race), p. 123 .
  7. a b Sauermost and joyful, 2002 (article "Landrace").
  8. Sauermost and joyful, 2002 (article "cultivars").