Yates Family


YATES cattle were bred during the lifetime of Cap Yates who passed away in the late sixties. Most of the original stock were dispersed by his family just after his death. The Yates herd was about 1500 head of rugged cows in the Big Bend area of West Texas, near Alpine. Mr. Yates felt that no breed of cattle offered the rancher what Texas Longhorns did in that harsh area of near desert. He did, in my opinion, a great job of preventing outside blood from entering his program. He honestly felt any other blood was inferior to a small Spanish type rugged Longhorn.

The Yates cows have every quality needed to produce calves in the desert. They are structurally sound and good mothers. They are a true result of survival of the fittest.

The old Yates cattle as a group probably weren't impressive. Many were the smallest horned and most solid colored of the seven families. Today we see some beautiful colored Yates cattle which were not a normal thing years ago. Yates cattle lovers have selectively bred for the families with the most color and there are some over 50" horned Yates cows. These are often very twisted as they get old. Some Yates cows are very "long headed", "sway backed", and have high tail sets. Of all the seven, they represent the old traditional, coarse, small and rangy type. There were a few truly magnificent Yates cows for horn. These few 50" cows in number probably were one in hundreds among Yates cows. The normal Yates cow has a small circumference and short horn tip to tip.

As to Yates bulls, I have never understood how to mate them. Many Yates bulls have been used but I've never seen one with truly long horns. Why aren't there some Yates bulls with 50" horns like Yates cows? I have no answer for that one. Most of the Yates bulls' horns average under 36" with a very few over that. Some well known Yates bulls possess less than 30" horn tip to tip. The big horn cattle of Yates blood are revealed as steers, and some are very competitive in shows in their old age.

Cap Yates liked the WR cattle and over the years traded bulls with WR several times. Elmer Parker, at WR, felt the Yates blood did a lot to help the WR program.