The Connemara pony is a breed native to Ireland. This is a curiosity because it is the only breed originating in this wonderful country.
It was a wild breed in the muddy areas of the west of Ireland, until 1970. Specifically, this breed of horses lived in the region called Connemara, hence its name. This peninsular region is characterized by swamps and coasts. The name of this region comes from the terms “Conmhaicne Mara”, which means descendants of the sea.
In the early stages of its domestication process, it was used for the transport of peat, algae and potatoes, products of the region. Packsaddles were used for this. Packsaddles are herds typical of pack animals whose main function is to protect the animal from the weight of the load.
Subsequently, it was used to drag coal wagons in the mines, as a draft horse.
Although the Connemara Pony began its relationship with humans as a pack animal, it is currently used in many activities. We can find it in the traditional use as cargo transport to the different equestrian sports.
The excellent characteristics of this horse made it spread quickly. Currently the Pony Connemara can be found throughout Europe.
The Connemara pony has been crossed with English thoroughbreds and Arabian horses. From these crosses have been obtained horses with excellent characteristics. The descendants have great endurance and have been used as racehorses or for cross country.
They are known for their athleticism, versatility, and good disposition.
It is a very interesting specimen that we will help you to know better. Without further ado, let’s get started.
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Connemara Pony Breeders’ Society
The Connemara Pony Breeders’ Society was founded in 1923. It aims to ensure the preservation and enhancement of the pony as the native breed of Ireland.
The Society holds an annual show. This activity allows the assembly of the largest group of ponies in the world. One of its purposes is marketing both in Ireland and abroad.
They annually organize the annual Pony Connemara show, as we mentioned earlier, the largest group of ponies worldwide. This event is the biggest benefit that members of the Connemara Pony Breeders’ Society receive.
In 2023 they will celebrate an event for the centenary of their organization. It is planned to be an activity that unifies or complements the annual Pony Connemara show event.
Without a doubt, 2023 will be an excellent year for this breed and for lovers of this.
Theories about the origin of the Connemara pony
One of the great unknowns about the Connemara pony is its origin. The characteristics of the Connemara are not entirely typical of the region, so several hypotheses are raised in this regard.
One of these theories states that there were large migrations of horses fleeing the constant wars of the time. This caused them to cross with the mountain horses native to the region to create the ancestor of the Connemara pony.
Another theory points out its possible origin in the first Celtic peoples of these horses. This would make their ancestors situated in the sixth century. This theory posits that the Celtic peoples who settled in the region carried their horses. With this they brought horses with good characteristics for the work.
However, among the most accepted theories is the possible transport of horses from other regions in the fourteenth century. Punctually, the shipwreck of a ship of the Spanish navy in 1587, which was transporting horses to one of its colonies, is noted. The shipwreck caused the few surviving horses to reach the shores in the north-west of Ireland.
Thanks to this, horses would have prospered without contact with humans through crossing with native breeds. This mix gave him a number of attributes that made the Connemara Pony unique.
It doesn’t matter if the Conemara has roots in Scandinavian horses, wild mountaineers or the horses of a Spanish shipwreck. Undoubtedly, this horse currently shines with its own light thanks to the characteristics that make it unique and that we will see below.
The adult pony is between 128 and 148 centimeters tall. It is robust and resistant, with a compact body, arched ribs and a wide chest. As for the size, since the swampy areas of this region had little grass, this horse moved to richer pastures, and this led to its increase in size.
It is one of the largest pony breeds in existence. At 5 years of age is when it reaches full maturity. In addition, their life expectancy is about 30 years.
Its head has an average size, well balanced and with good separation between the eyes. For his part, the eyes of this horse are large, with a noble look.
We can find the Connemara Pony in different color patterns among which we have:
- Bay (yellowish white or beige)
- Alazán (reddish brown color)
- Palomino (white)
- Thrush (dotted coat of black and white colors)
- Brown (dark brown defined)
- Roan (white or brown fur with white hairs evenly distributed, could resemble gray hair)
The only color that does not occur in the connemara layer is Pio. The Pio layer is a layer that has white spots on the primary color.
Behavioral characteristics of the Connemara Pony
It is an intelligent, calm, and sensitive pony. He is also brave, hardworking, and fast. His temperament is maintained and manageable, kind, and responsive. As for his functions, he stands out in jumping, dressage and polo, and accompanies in shooting and mountaineering activities.
It is the competition pony recommended for children. In turn, it is a good jumper thanks to its powerful legs, the part of the equine’s body located behind the rider’s chair.
Another curiosity is that females can give birth to foals until the advanced age of 33 years. It is worth noting that this equine participates in the poney games. These are very popular games in France and England created in 1957, in Great Britain.
The Connemara Pony for Gustavo Mirabal
The Pony Connemara is a very versatile horse with great personality. Its calm temperament makes it perfect for equestrian sports and cargo. We are facing a race that pleases the eye and through its characteristics. This is one of the favotite breeds of Gustavo Mirabal Castro.