There are few moments in a person’s life that presents an opportunity to truly dream big. This was my invitation. Rather, I was catapulted on this journey after a dear friend of mine asked, “If you could do anything, what would you do?” My dream was to produce a documentary about the wild horses of Sable Island in Nova Scotia, Canada. I promised myself if Parks Canada and the Canadian Coast Guard granted me permission to visit the remote island, I’d find a way to get myself there. When that acceptance email came, I was both excited and terrified.
I started on the quest to find out about horses possessing ‘horns’; more accurately, frontal skull bosses (small bony bumps covered by skin and hair that occur on the forehead) after reading the following sentence in a 2007 article by Beverly Davis11: “Bucephalus means ‘ox-head’ and it is possible the name might come from the calcium ‘horns’ that are found on the foreheads of horses descended from the Persian.” My research led me to the Moyle horse, a rare breed which was known to regularly exhibit these frontal skull bosses...
After a two-year absence, Equitana returned to Melbourne over four days in November last year. A celebration of all things equine, Equitana always has a great program of educational and competitive events but, in 2016, it wasn’t just the Grand Prix level competitions drawing the crowds. Every day was jam-packed with education, competition and showcases that focused on two groups of horses in particular: Australian brumbies and ex-racehorses. Off the track and into the spotlight
One of the world’s most commonly recognised breeds, the Thoroughbred is a breathtaking example of speed and versatility, endurance and agility. Bred primarily for racing, the breed boasts a rich history that has been widely documented, and we are lucky enough to know much about this exceptional animal, its foundations and the journey undertaken to arrive at the horse we know today. This month, Harriet Leahy shares Part Two of her new two-part series on one of the world’s favourite horse breeds. Studbook and racing
One of the world’s most commonly recognised breeds, the Thoroughbred is a breathtaking example of speed and versatility, endurance and agility. Bred primarily for racing, the breed boasts a rich history that has been widely documented, and we are lucky enough to know much about this exceptional animal, its foundations and the journey undertaken to arrive at the horse we know today. This month, Harriet Leahy shares Part One of her new two-part series on one of the world’s favourite horse breeds. History
There’s nothing like the practical experience of travelling, visiting and talking with horsemen and women in different countries to learn how they work with horses and their land. This month, Jane Myers talks about her visit to the New Forest in the South of England, where livestock, including ponies, roam freely. New Forest is a fascinating area in Hampshire in the United Kingdom. Ponies, donkeys, cattle, deer, sheep and, at certain times of year, even pigs roam free on ‘common land’.
More than a century ago, the last wild Tarpan was lost. Equus ferus ferus or the Eurasian wild horse, commonly known as the Tarpan, once roamed in great herds across Europe but, by the end of the 19th Century, they had become extinct. After centuries of hunting, the last wild mare died in an attempt to evade capture. Some years later, the last captive Tarpan passed away and the species passed into history.
When the Maori priest and explorer Ngātoroirangi came to the foothills of the great mountain Tongariro, he encountered a fellow traveller, Hapekituarangi. Ngātoroirangi looked up at the snow-capped peaks and asked Hapekituarangi what there was to eat in such country.
Thought to be the horses depicted on the Parthenon Frieze, Skyrian horses have lived on the remote island of Skyros, Greece, for thousands of years. Today, less than 300 of these unique horses are left in the world. In the heart of the Aegean Sea, partway between mainland Greece and Turkey, lies the island of Skyros. In legend, Skyros played an important role in the Trojan War, sheltering Achilles until he was discovered by Odysseus and persuaded to join the cause against Troy. In the 5th Century BC, the island became a part of the Athenian Empire and, with the settlers, came horses.
The Australian Pony is arguably one of the most beautiful and versatile pony breeds in the world. From a rather complex beginning, a unique breed of pony evolved, drawing on the most suitable characteristics of many breeds for well over a century.