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The Importance of the Dam Line in Horse Breeding

December 2015 by Cristina Wilkins, Editor-in-Chief, Horses & People Magazine

New research shows that, as well as performance, the dam line influences gestation length and the filly to colt ratio. The findings could help breeders choose and better manage their broodmares. 

Many horse breeders place great importance on the stallion when establishing a breeding line, but often, it is the maternal lineage or dam line that plays a crucial role. While other studies have shown the influence of the dam’s line on the offspring’s performance in racing and other sports, there had been no research into how it affects the reproductive traits of mares.