Buffalo kept for dairy production. It is originally from Punjab and Haryana states of India and Pakistan and has been used to improve the milk production of dairy buffalo in other countries, such as Italy, Bulgaria and Egypt. In Brazil this breed of buffalo is used for production of meat and also milk. This breed of buffalo sells for a high price.
Buffalo are large members of the Bovidae family. There are two types of buffalo: the African or Cape buffalo and the Asian water buffalo. They are dark gray or black animals that look a lot like bulls.
Buffalo are often confused with bison. Early American settlers called bison "buffalo" because the animals are similar in appearance. However, while bison are also bovines (a subfamily of bovids), they are in a different genus from true buffalo. Other bovines include domestic cattle, oxen, yaks.
Buffalo are social animals and live in groups called herds. Water buffalo herds are segregated by gender. Young males stay with the maternal herd for about three years, and then they join a male herd. Maternal herds have up to 30 females and their offspring. Male herds have up to 10 members. African buffalo herds are mostly of mixed gender. They do have a few all-male herds, but these usually consist of old males. An African herd often has more than 1,000 members.
Buffalo live mostly on the plains, but some are known to inhabit river valleys as well as forests. Buffalo and bison played an important role on the North American plains for many years.
Plains Indians used every part of the buffalo to help them survive. Their hides were used for clothing, blankets and shelters, meat was used for food, and bones were used for tools and toys. Horns were used for cups and spoons while tendons were used for thread and bowstrings. Buffalo chips were used for fuel.