Male gaur Bos gaurus, copyright N. A. Naseer.

Belongs within: Bovidae.

The Bovini, cattle and buffalo, are a predominately Eurasian group of large grazing ungulates, with the only living (non-domesticated) species found elsewhere being the North American bison Bison bison and the cape buffalo Syncerus caffer of Africa. The most widely domesticated members of the group include the European cattle Bos taurus, zebu B. indicus and water buffalo Bubalus bubalis. Other locally domesticated species are the gaur Bos gaurus, banteng B. javanicus and yak B. grunniens.

Characters (from Gentry 1978): Skull low and wide; horn cores in both sexes emerging transversely from skull; frontals and horn cores with internal sinuses; braincase short, basioccipitals triangular; molars with basal pillars and complicated central cavities, upper molars with prominent outbowed ribs between styles, lower molars without large goat folds.

    |  i. s.: Poephagus grunniens L50
    |         Bibos banteng USDI77
    |--+--Pseudoryx Vu, Pham et al. 1993 FS15, VP93
    |  |    `--*P. nghetinhensis Vu, Pham et al. 1993 VP93
    |  `--+--+--+--Simatherium kohllarseni Dietrich 1941 G78
    |     |  |  `--Pelorovis Reck 1928 G78
    |     |  |       |--P. antiquus (Duvernoy 1851) [incl. Bubalus baini, B. nilssoni] G78
    |     |  |       |--P. capensis D07
    |     |  |       `--P. oldowayensis Reck 1928 [incl. Bularchus arok] G78
    |     |  `--+--Ugandax gautieri Cooke & Coryndon 1970 G78
    |     |     `--+--*Homoioceras singae Bate 1949 G78
    |     |        `--Syncerus caffer KK02 [incl. Bubalus andersoni Scott 1907 G78]
    |     |             |--S. c. caffer UH84
    |     |             `--S. c. nanus UH84
    |     `--+--Proamphibos G78
    |        `--+--Hemibos G78
    |           `--Bubalus KK02 [incl. Pseudonovibos Peter & Feiler 1994 BD01; Pseudonovibovina]
    |                |  i. s.: B. brachyceros B66
    |                |         B. caffer [incl. B. caffer var. aequinoctialis] B66
    |                |         B. palaeindicus K99
    |                |         B. planiceros B66
    |                |--+--B. mindorensis FS15 [=Anoa mindorensis USDI77]
    |                |  `--B. palaeokerabau FS15
    |                `--+--+--B. arnee (Kerr 1792) FS15, GC-BG04
    |                   |  `--B. bubalis (Linnaeus 1758) GC-BG04 (see below for synonymy)
    |                   `--+--B. depressicornis FS15 [=Anoa depressicornis USDI77]
    |                      `--B. quarlesi FS15 [=Anoa quarlesi USDI77]
    `--+--Leptobos G78
       |    |--L. brevicornis DW04
       |    |--L. falconeri G78
       |    `--L. syrticus Petrocchi 1956 G78
       `--Bos Linnaeus 1758 KK02, L58
            |  i. s.: B. bubalis Linnaeus 1758 L58
            |         B. indicus Linnaeus 1758 GC-BG04 [=B. taurus indicus VK06]
            |         B. namadicus Falconer 1859 [=B. primigenius namadicus] GC-BG04
            |--+--+--B. bonasus Linnaeus 1758 L58 [=Bison bonasus FS15]
            |  |  `--+--*B. taurus Linnaeus 1758 GC-BG04
            |  |     `--B. primigenius Bojanus 1827 FS15, GC-BG04 (see below for synonymy)
            |  `--+--B. sauveli FS15 [=Novibos sauveli VP93]
            |     `--+--B. gaurus Smith 1827 FS15, GC-BG04 [incl. B. frontalis Lambert 1804 BP87, GC-BG04]
            |        |    |--B. g. gaurus TB01
            |        |    `--B. g. readei TB01
            |        `--B. javanicus FS15
            |             |--B. j. javanicus TB01
            |             `--B. j. birmanicus TB01
            `--+--+--B. grunniens Linnaeus 1766 GC-BG04
               |  `--B. mutus (Przewalski 1883) FS15, GC-BG04 [=B. grunniens mutus USDI77]
               `--Bison FS15
                    |--B. alaskensis B61
                    |--B. antiquus G91
                    |    |--B. a. antiquus G91
                    |    `--B. a. occidentalis G91
                    |--B. bison (Linnaeus 1758) [=Bos bison] B75
                    |    |--B. b. bison UH84
                    |    `--B. b. athabascae UH84
                    |--B. crassicornis B61
                    |--B. menneri ME05
                    |--B. occidentalis B61
                    |--B. palaeosinensis DW04
                    |--B. priscus ME05
                    `--B. schoetensacki ME05

Inorganic: Anoa depressicornis minilorientalis Okamura 1987 O87
           Bos primigenius protominilorientalus Okamura 1987 O87

Bos primigenius Bojanus 1827 FS15, GC-BG04 [=B. taurus primigenius FP64; incl. Bubalus vignardi Gaillard 1934 G78]

Bubalus bubalis (Linnaeus 1758) GC-BG04 [incl. *Pseudonovibos spiralis Peter & Feiler 1994 BD01]

*Type species of generic name indicated


[B61] Banfield, A. W. F. 1961. A revision of the reindeer and caribou, genus Rangifer. National Museum of Canada Bulletin 177: i–vi, 1–137.

[B66] Blyth, E. 1866. A note on African buffalos. Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London 1866: 371–373.

[B75] Bowles, J. B. 1975. Distribution and biogeography of mammals of Iowa. Special Publications, The Museum, Texas Tech University 9: 1–184.

[BD01] Brandt, J. H., M. Dioli, A. Hassanin, R. A. Melville, L. E. Olson, A. Seveau & R. M. Timm. 2001. Debate on the authenticity of Pseudonovibos spiralis as a new species of wild bovid from Vietnam and Cambodia. Journal of Zoology 255: 437–444.

[BP87] Burton, J. A., & B. Pearson. 1987. Collins Guide to the Rare Mammals of the World. Collins: London.

[DW04] Deng T., Wang X., Ni X. & Liu L. 2004. Sequence of the Cenozoic mammalian faunas of the Linxia Basin in Gansu, China. Acta Geologica Sinica (English Edition) 78 (1): 8–14.

[D07] Dixon, D. 2007. The Complete Illustrated Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs & Prehistoric Creatures. Hermes House: London.

[FS15] Faurby, S., & J.-C. Svenning. 2015. A species-level phylogeny of all extant and late Quaternary extinct mammals using a novel heuristic-hierarchical Bayesian approach. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 84: 14–26.

[FP64] Fisher, J., & R. T. Peterson. 1964. The World of Birds: A comprehensive guide to general ornithology. Macdonald: London.

[G78] Gentry, A. W. 1978. Bovidae. In: Maglio, V. J., & H. B. S. Cooke (eds) Evolution of African Mammals pp. 540–572. Harvard University Press: Cambridge (Massachusetts).

[GC-BG04] Gentry, A., J. Clutton-Brock & C. P. Groves. 2004. The naming of wild animal species and their domestic derivatives. Journal of Archaeological Science 31: 645–651.

[G91] Groves, C. P. 1991. A Theory of Human and Primate Evolution revised ed. Clarendon Press: Oxford.

[K99] Kennedy, K. A. R. 1999. Paleoanthropology of South Asia. Evolutionary Anthropology 8 (5): 165–185.

[KK02] Kuznetsov, G. V., E. E. Kulikov, N. B. Petrov, N. V. Ivanova, A. A. Lomov, M. V. Kholodova & A. B. Poltaraus. 2002. Mitochondrial 12S rDNA sequence relationships suggest that the enigmatic bovid “linh duong” Pseudonovibos spiralis is closely related to buffalo. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 23 (1): 91–94.

[L58] Linnaeus, C. 1758. Systema Naturae per Regna Tria Naturae, secundum classes, ordines, genera, species, cum characteribus, differentiis, synonymis, locis. Tomus I. Editio decima, reformata. Laurentii Salvii: Holmiae.

[L50] Liu, C.-C. 1950. Amphibians of western China. Fieldiana: Zoology Memoirs 2: 1–400.

[ME05] Moullé, P.-E., A. Echassoux, F. Lacombat, E. Desclaux & S. Bailon. 2005. L’environnement animal des premiers habitants de l’Europe méditerranéenne: les grands mammifères contemporains de l’homme du Vallonnet, données taxonomiques et biostratigraphiques pour la deuxième moitie du Pléistocène inférieur. BAR International Series 1364: 105–113.

[O87] Okamura, C. 1987. New facts: Homo and all Vertebrata were born simultaneously in the former Paleozoic in Japan. Original Report of the Okamura Fossil Laboratory 15: 347–573.

[TB01] Timm, R. M., & J. H. Brandt. 2001. Pseudonovibos spiralis (Artiodactyla: Bovidae): new information on this enigmatic south-east Asian ox. Journal of Zoology 253: 157–166.

[UH84] Underwood, R., & S. J. G. Hall. 1984. Wild cattle and spiral-horned antelopes. In: Macdonald, D. (ed.) All the World’s Animals: Hoofed Mammals pp. 104–113. Torstar Books: New York.

[USDI77] USDI (United States Department of the Interior). 1977. Endangered and threatened wildlife and plants—republication of list of species. Federal Register 42: 36420–36431.

[VK06] Voigt, C. C., & D. H. Kelm. 2006. Host preference of the common vampire bat (Desmodus rotundus; Chiroptera) assessed by stable isotopes. Journal of Mammalogy 87 (1): 1–6.

[VP93] Vu V. D., Pham M. G., Nguyen N. C., D. Tuoc, P. Arctander & J. MacKinnon. 1993. A new species of living bovid from Vietnam. Nature 363: 443–445.

Last updated: 24 July 2018.

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