Horse

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Physical Characteristics:

There exists about 400 different breeds of horses including miniatures. They specialize in everything from pulling wagons to racing, so the physical characteristics of horses vary greatly. They can be anywhere from 120 to 2,200 pounds with heights at the shoulders of 30 to 69 inches. Depending on the breed, the coat and mane can be any combination of brown, blonde, black, white, or grey, solid or patterned sometimes with distinctive markings. Each breed has its own colors and patterns that are often exclusive to the breed.

Habitat/Diet:

There is only one remaining sub-species of horse which is still considered wild. This horse, the Przewalski's horse is the only truly wild horse whose ancestors were never domesticated. Ironically, this stocky, sturdy animal exists today only in captivity. The last wild Przewalski's horse was seen in Mongolia in 1968. Other "wild" horses are actually known as "feral" horses. Feral horses are the descendants of once-tame animals that have run free for generations. Groups of such horses can be found in many places around the world.

All horses are grazers and have to eat constantly since their digestive systems are so inefficient.

Social Behavior:

Horses are herd animals and love the company of one another within a group. As herd animals, they rely on constant communication to stay out of danger from predators or environmental problems. Inside the herd, there is an intricate interplay of dominance. Horse herds establish pecking orders that are often in flux daily as horses like to test out their relationships to see if they can move up in the ranks. A dominant horse will use body language to communicate its wishes through to the rest of the herd below it.

As prey animals, they developed quick responses to danger and will run away from predators, or with a domestic horse, anything that the horse feels could be a danger to them.

Sources:

Meet our Residents

Fascinating Facts

    • Humans began domesticating horses around 4000 BC, and their domestication is believed to have been widespread by 3000 BC.
    • The endangered Przewalski's horse, a separate subspecies, is the only remaining true wild horse.
    • There are about 400 different breeds of horses.

Status In The Wild

Our horses are domesticated.

Waystation Residents

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