Tour - the extinct ancestor of domestic cows

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Tour - the bull, which today can be found only in the pictures. This is an extinct primitive species of wild cattle, which is the progenitor of all our modern cows. Let's find out about him together.

View Overview

According to recent research by geneticists, the bull is the closest extinct relative of modern domestic cows. Many of the livestock species are a domesticated form of the Eurasian tour, which was completely destroyed in 1627. Today, the appearance of these animals resemble the African bulls Vatussi, gray Ukrainian cattle, as well as Indian gaur.

Vatussi - the modern look of an extinct bull

Thanks to numerous studies, today we can present not only how this bull looked, but also how it lived, what it ate. Tours were mostly inhabited by forest-steppe zones, but in winter they left for the forest, where they took out grass and shoots from under the snow. They also ate these large herbivorous leaves of trees and bushes. In the warm season, the animals lived in small groups or one by one. But in the winter united in large herds. Due to the large size and very large horns in nature, the enemies did not have tours, but they were destroyed by human hands.

Origin

Tours inhabited the steppe and forest-steppe of the Eastern Hemisphere from the second half of the anthropogen. Scientists found images of these animals in Egyptian drawings, as well as in Ethiopia and Somalia. It is believed that the bulls originally inhabited the banks of the Nile, then came to Africa and only then to India and Pakistan. Later, the tours inhabited the lands of Europe, Asia Minor, the Caucasus and North Africa. The first populations of these animals were destroyed in Africa, then they disappeared in Mesopotamia and only in Central Europe did they manage to live long enough.

Initially, the number of tours decreased due to intensive deforestation, in the XII century, they massively migrated to the banks of the Dnieper. But by the XV century, they already lived in small groups in the tundra forests of Poland and Lithuania. Here, because of the small number, they were taken under protection and lived in a conservation area mainly in the royal forests. However, this did not save them. In 1599, only 29 individuals were recorded near Warsaw. After 4 years there are only 4 left.

Diorama of the Battle of Man with the Tour

Interesting. Until now, scientists can’t say for sure that this has had a detrimental effect on the life of the tours, but it is known that the last individual died in 1627 in the forests of Yaktorov not from the hand of a hunter, but from an illness. There is a possibility that the animals were knocked down by a too weak genetic system that did not withstand the living conditions of that time.

Appearance

The tour at one time was one of the largest herbivores that lived after the ice age. Today, its size can be compared only with the European bison, which can be seen in the photo. With several precise research scientists, today we can imagine what looked like an extinct type of bull. So, the tour was a large, muscular animal with a height of about 170-180 centimeters. The body weight of adult bulls was about 800 kilograms.

One of the ornaments of this herbivore was sharp long horns. Their distinctive feature is the orientation inward and wide scope, as in the photo. In males, the horns reached 100 centimeters in length and had a diameter of up to 20 centimeters. Males had dark brown almost black color with light stripes typical for wild species along the back.

Spanish bull in appearance resembles a wild ancestor

Females were lighter with a reddish-brown coat color. It is important to note that initially two types of tours were distinguished: Indian and European. In this case, the latter was much larger than the Indian. And although the tours are considered the ancestors of domestic cows, they had a slightly different physique, as seen in the photo.

For example, they had longer slender legs, a larger head, massive horns and an elongated skull. Also issued a significant shoulder hump, like a modern Spanish bull. Only rare breeds, such as the pahuna and the Maremman cow, have such external data. Females also differed. They did not have such a pronounced udder, but instead, it was covered with wool and did not stand out from the side.

Attempt to revive the bulls

Today, the efforts of geneticists and zoologists are not in vain. Many scientists manage to revive some extinct species of animals, including, trying to recreate the bull tour. For example, it is known that Adolf Hitler was thinking about this. During his rule, there were even several attempts to crossbreed cattle from France, Scotland and Corsica. However, these species are not preserved after the fall of the Hitler regime.

Heck's Bulls - An Attempt to Revive Tours

Today, scientists are also trying to continue earlier efforts. For example, the Dutch organization Foundation Taurus, by crossing some European breeds, is trying to get cows that resemble tours in appearance. However, to obtain the original large size of animals still remains in development.

Inspired by the successful revival of extinct tarpans, Polish scientists today are also trying to recreate wild tours. While their project is under development and supported by the Ministry of Environmental Protection.

Photo Gallery

We invite you to see how the bull tour looked in the photo below.

Graphic image of the tour Skeleton tour in the museum Person size and tour ratio Monument Tour in Estonia

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