• About 200 BC, invading Aryans came through arid Baluchistan and the cold Punjab to settle in the torrid coastal shores of India along the Bay of Bengal, in the Madras region, bringing with them cattle that would be called Ongola. By the time the first animals of this breed were shipped to Brazil, some Misore blood had crept in, and in Brazil they were renamed Nelore.
  • The Brazilians kept the purity of this Bos Indicus breed, when they began selecting for beef production during the late 1800's.
  • Manoel Ubelhart Lemgruber, a Swiss rancher from Rio de Janeiro, made the first importation of Nelore cattle in 1878. Lemgruber's second importation was in 1880 and the third in 1883. Two sires stand out from these importations: Hanomet and Castor.
  • Manoel de Souza Machado and the state of Bahia imported another group of Nelore in 1906.
  • In 1923, Pedro Marquez Nunes, a breeder from Rio de Janeiro-Fazende Indiana-sent a shipment of 85 Nelore to Mexico. Bad weather delayed the shipment destined to Vera Cruz, and after much suffering, the cattle were finally unloaded in Tampico and had to be sold at a loss. Some US cattle breeders selected some of the better animals and moved them to Texas, among them a bull called Satan, which was extensively used. The Nelore was one of the original components of the American Brahman.
  • Marquez Nunes brought a number of bulls back from India in 1930. With his own sire, Louro, Maraj, Raj and Sheik became the building blocks of the early Nelore development in Brazil.
  • The Nelore Herd book was established in Brazil in 1938, and at that time the founders defined the breed characteristics. The first polled Nelores were registered in 1969.
  • Further imports from India were made in 1960 (20 animals) and 1962 (84 animals), as inbreeding had become a problem. The outstanding sires from those two groups were: Godhavari, Taj Mahal, Karvadi, Golias, Rastan and Bima.
  • In Brazil, the largest concentrations of Nelore are found between the Tropic of Capricorn and the Equator - the hottest, most humid climate. The breed is also fast becoming a favorite in Argentina, Columbia, Venezuela, Mexico and Central America.
Interest in Nelore cattle in the U.S. was begun with importations of 10 Nelore bulls in 1982 (in addition to 6 Gir and 10 Indu Brazil bulls) (Paschal et al., 1991). The American Brahman (Gray) is a mixture of Guzerat (a large draft breed of moderate milk potential in India) and Nelore, with some minor influence of other Zebu breeds. Sanders (1980) reported that until the 1920's most of the U.S. Zebu cattle were of the Nelore type and that as a result, the Nelore cattle contributed heavily to the formation of the American Gray Brahman. It is estimated that the Gray Brahman is 1/8 to 1/4 Nelore in genetic composition. The 1982 importation of Bos Indicus breeds into the U.S. was the first since 1946 (which were all Indu Brazil from Mexico) (Sanders, 1980). As a result of several research project in the U.S. studying reproduction and maternal ability (Paschal et al., 1991; Cundiff et al., 1993, Thrift, 1997, Eller et al. 2002 Riley et al., 2001a, b, ), growth (Paschal et al., 1991; Paschal et al., 1995; Cundiff et al., 1993; Franke, 1997; Thrift, 1997,), and Feedyard and carcass merit (Paschal et al., 1995; Cundiff et al., 1993; Franke, 1997) interest in the Nelore breed continues to increase.

  • In 1987, Paulo Brito and Ovidio Carlos de Brito purchased 127 females from US cattle breeders who had imported them from Brazil during the early 1980's. By December 1987, the ranch had been purchased and was in production, starting with Brazilian semen.
  • The location of this ranch was carefully chosen because of its climate and nearness to Houston, a major port of entry to the United States and exit to the world.
  • The TEXAS CONNECTION Company currently runs over 500 head of purebred Nelore cows and is using the latest technologies (ie in vitro fertilization, embryo splitting) in its future production. Nelore produced at the Texas TEXAS CONNECTION can now be found in various states in the U.S., in Mexico, Australia, Thailand, Guatemala, Spain, Bolivia, Paraguay, Argentina, and other countries.
  • The TEXAS CONNECTION in Brazil (Grupo OMB) has a solid 50 years of outstanding selection behind it, having bred more than 2 million females with 14 different breed lines. Its 2700 loyal buyers, both in Brazil and around the world, can measure its success.
  • Ovidio Miranda Brito was involved from the beginning in developing the polled variety of Nelore in Brazil. His bull, Caburei, and his cow, Simpatia, both hold registration #1 in the polled register; therefore it is only proper that about 70 percent of the Texas operation's cattle are polled.