From Variable Animal Populations to the Nordic Mountain Cattle Breeds

A Model of the Birth of Native Animal Breeds and Local Cattle Types in Northern Sweden, Finland and Norway at the End of the Nineteenth Century and the Beginning of the Twentieth Century


  • Hilja Solala Tampereen yliopisto, Historian oppiaine


native animal breeds, Nordic Mountain Cattle, history of animal breeding


In recent years, human’s shared past with animals has been recognised as one of the topical issues in the field of history. This article raises one question about the history of domestic animals, which is little known in previous studies conducted in Finland – animal breeding and native animals. First, I outline the stages of the birth of native animal breeds. Second, I analyse how this manifested in breeding local cattle types in northern Sweden, Finland and Norway at the end of the nineteenth century and beginning of the twentieth century. In the modern sense of the concept, establishing breeds was the basis for the white cattle of northern Fennoscandia, now conserved as at-risk or endangered native breeds and known as the Nordic Mountain Cattle.