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Horse Breeds: Hokkaido, Holsteiner, Hucul, Hungarian Warmblood

Jul 10, 2008
*HOKKAIDO*

In Japan, the Hokkaido breed is called "Do-san-ko" as a term of endearment. Hokkaido ponies are an old breed, thought to have been brought by fishermen to Hokkaido during the Edo era (1600 to 1867). The fishermen were searching for herring in Hokkaido, and used the horses as their transportation- but when the fishermen returned home, they left the horses in Hokkaido. The fishermen expected the horses to live on their own with snow all winter; with little bamboo grass in the mountains. When they returned in the spring, the fishermen would bring new horses and make use of any surviving horses they found. It is from this cycle that the Hokkaido developed their enduring strength.

Most of the breed is located in Hokkaido along the Pacific Coast. of the remaining Japanese ponies, the Hokkaido is the most plentiful with about 2000 ponies existing. The Hokkaido are primarily used for transportation in mountains where vehicles and machines cannot pass through. The eat mostly bamboo grass and will wander the mountains in the winter, if left free in search of bamboo, and will find their way back to the ranch in the spring before the bears awake from hibernation. The horses are mostly solid colors, and white markings are not allowed by the registry.

*HOLSTEINER*

In Schleswig-Holstein, a northern province of Germany, the Holsteiner horse breed is the result of systematic breeding that took place over a period of 750 years. The horse was originally valued by the farmers of German for their steadiness, reliability and strength. The military used Holsteiner's because of their courage and agility. When mechanization and conditions changed post war Germany, the use of Holsteiner horses changed and they developed into sporting horses for driving, jumping, and eventing. Breeders carefully included English Thoroughbred and Anglo-Norman blood into the breeding process to add elgance and jumping ability to Holsteiner's characteristics.

Modern day Holsteiner horses are about 16 or 17 hands in height, with strong backs and loins. They have arched necks that rise from an angled shoulder, and their head shows off a large, intelligent eye. Their appearance makes them winners in self-carriage events- an elegant movement that is required for driving and jumping, as well as dressage competitions.

Ideal for sports, the Holsteiner has a fluid movement, and a willingness to work that is not found in many other breeds.

*HUCUL*

One of the typical mountain breed of horses, the Hucul is a breed that came from the Carpathians. In what is currently called Romania, the native country of the Hucul is the Huculsko region of Carpathians. Both the Kertag horses and Arabian horses have contributed to the Hucul breed.

Hucul is very much like a wild horse, due to it's breeding in the harsh conditions of Bukovina Carpathians.

Breeding development was stopped by World War I, and the Hucul herd of horses was moved to Austria. When the war ended, the herd and breeding of Hucul was later moved to Czechoslovakia and Poland.

Common characteristics of the Hucul breed include a calm temperatment, small and sturdy conformation, tough hooves and being easy to feed. They can be used as draft horses in the woods, or pack animals or riding animals on mountainous routes.

There are only about 500 brood mares in all of the world.

*HUNGARIAN WARMBLOOD*

Sometimes known as the "hungarian sport horse", the Hungarian Warmblood was developed in Hungary. The breeders used selective breeding and crossing with native Hungarian horse breeds, including the Holsteiner, Dutch Warmblood, Kisber Felver, Gidran and Nonius, among others.

The Hungarian Warmblood breed is well known for modern sport disciplines- including show jumping, combine driving, dressage, and eventing.

The breed has an average height of 16 to 17 hands and come in all solid colords. Hungarian Warmbloods are smaller, lighter and more elegant than other warmblood horses because of the influence of Hungarian breeds during breeding processes. In order for inclusion in the registry, the horses must be inspected and licensed by the breeding committee.
About the Author
Phillipe Wiskell is a writer for www.HorseClicks.com, popular classifieds of horses for sale, horse property and trailers for sale.
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