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Group receives applications to rehome 141 Kaimanawa horses

Horses in the yard in a previous muster. Photo: Kaimanawa Heritage Horses Society

Horses in the yard in a previous muster. Photo: Kaimanawa Heritage Horses Society

Applications for the 2014 muster of wild horses which inhabit New Zealand’s Kaimanawa Ranges have closed, with a total of 141 received.

This year’s Department of Conservation muster is aiming for the removal of 180 animals from their central North Island rangelands, meaning most of those best-suited for rehoming should go to new owners.

The Kaimanawa Heritage Horses Welfare Society said on its Facebook page that it would accept applications in its mailbox on Monday morning, but the application period was otherwise closed.

Final numbers to be rehomed would change after its volunteers carried out the mandatory home checks and review of references from those seeking the wild horses.

The state-funded musters are undertaken to keep the population in check. The society seeks suitable homes as an alternative to the horses going to slaughter.

Horses from each muster leave the muster yards in trucks bound either for their new homes, or direct to slaughter.

The official count from the aerial census conducted by the department in March indicated there were 469 Kaimanawa horses within the designated management zone and another 38 horses outside the area.

The department aims to maintain the wild horse population at 300 horses, making the mustering and removal of excess horses necessary.

It is estimated that 393 of the horses within the zone are adults and 76 are juveniles.

Kaimanawa horses on the range. Photo: Kaimanawa Heritage Horses Society

Kaimanawa horses on the range. Photo: Kaimanawa Heritage Horses Society

Kaimanawa Heritage Horses commits to taking all of the unplaced foals and yearlings, but horses as young as two years and everything older all face the abattoir unless homes can be found.

In 2012, the group had 179 horses to place. It found homes for 119 horses and the remainder went to slaughter.

Kaimanawas are generally ponies between 13.2 hands and 14.2 hands. The occasional animal matures to 15 hands, but they are rare. They are mostly bay/brown or chestnut. There are blacks and greys, but no coloured horses.

Kaimanawa horses have made headlines in equestrian circles since the 2012 muster.

They have grown in stature by proving both trainable and talented.

 

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Comments (3)

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  1. Margo says:

    Instead of slaughter, why not geld most of the stallions & sterilize the malot of the mares? Stop murdering the innocent when steps can be taken to prevent life from the start!

  2. SUZAN ESCHENBURG says:

    I AGREE WITH THE REST OF THE PEOPLE LET THEM GO FREE THERE IS NO SINCE ON KEEPING THEM LIKE YOU HAVE YOUR HURTING THEM AND US LET THEM GO GOD ISNT GOING TO BE HAPPY WITH ALL THS NEDLESS KILLING THERES PLENTY OF LAND AND PEOPLE LOVE THE HORSES INSTEAD OF KILLING THEM MAKE MONEY TO HELP CARE FOR THEM FROM VEIWING TRIPS AND PICTURES AND CAMPS TO WHERE PEOPLE CAN WAKE AND SEE THE HORSES RUN FREE AND THEY CAN ENJOY PEOPLE IN THE CITY LOVE THIS HELL EVEN PEOPLE IN THE OUT INTHE FARM AREA LIKE IT PLEASE THINK TWICE BE HURTING ANY MORE ANIMALS JUST LET THEM FREE

  3. Kim says:

    I am not sure how others feel but I will say this –
    Slaughter is never a solution nor should a rescue ever except that as a viable answer. Slaughter is not humane, never was, never will be!

    If you say you are a rescue, rescue all with no age limits. Understand funds are an issue find creative ways to raise them. allowing one horse to enter the slaughter pipeline is one too many!!! Why would you have cut off, a limit?

    Rescue! Rescue all you can, SLAUGHTER IS
    NEVER THE ANSWER!!

    For the horse!

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