Giant steer Knickers stands head and shoulders over herd

MYALUP, Australia -- Knickers, an enormous Holstein-Friesian, is making headlines after his owner declared him -- unofficially -- Australia's biggest steer.

The 7-year-old stands at a whopping 76 inches tall -- almost as tall as NBA legend Michael Jordan -- and weighs 3,086 pounds, its owner says.

The huge ruminant towers over the other beasts in the herd from the farm in Myalup, about 90 minutes south of Perth, the capital of Western Australia.

Holstein-Friesians are a dairy breed. Mature cows weigh about 1,500 pounds and stand 58 inches tall at the shoulder, according to one cattle industry site.

Bulls usually stand more than 70 inches tall and weigh more than 2,200 pounds.

Knickers is significantly heavier and taller than that.

Owner Geoff Pearson said Knickers' sheer size saved him from the abattoir.

"He was too big to go into the export plant's chain," the farmer told Australia's ABC News. "We have a high turnover of cattle and he was lucky enough to stay behind."

While he can't quite stake a claim to be a world-beater, Knickers measures up well against the world's largest steer, a chianina ox named Bellino, who measured about 79 inches at a cattle show in Rome in 2010.

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