Best Ponies England

James Lee
• Friday, 06 November, 2020
• 8 min read

This old breed of versatile mountain pony has long roamed the hills of Cambria. They are exceptionally alert, with big bright eyes, large nostrils and neat little ears.

pony exmoor ponies horses mist england
(Source: www.pinterest.com)


The body is deep and well muscled with strong legs and hard hooves. They have silky straight hair, known as feathers, around the fetlock and a long flowing mane and tail.

Fells are black, brown, bay and gray, with a little white on the forehead acceptable. Also known for its courage and intelligence, the Dales pony was a reliable ally for the British Army during both World Wars.

The Risky pony is a Scottish breed with a dense, gray waterproof coat. Originating from the Western Isles of Scotland, the breed had to adapt to harsh living conditions involving limited food supply and rainy weather.

The Risky pony was often a domesticated breed used as a children’s mount and for light work. Capable of withstanding rough weather conditions, it is a hardy breed with excellent stamina.

It is Britain’s oldest breed of native pony and dates back to around 50,000 BC. The Ex moor almost became extinct during the Second World War as many were used as target practice by trigger-happy troops.

(Source: www.mondomulia.com)

It is very reliable for jumping, trekking and all-round activities due to its stamina and ability to carry weight. Known for its prodigious speed, the New Forest pony has been a regular racing breed for decades.

According to breed standards, New Forest ponies may be of any color except for piebald, skewbald, or blue-eyed cream. It is a very strong and sturdy pony used as a workhouse during the Industrial Revolution, mainly to pull carts, carry coal and plow farms.

It can be seen in almost any color but is mainly black, chestnut, bay, gray, palomino, dun, roan, cello, and silver dapple. The breed was exported to the US in the 1880s and the arguably more refined US counterpart is now commonly referred to as the American Shetland pony.

The Welsh pony is a breed that traces its origin back to the Middle Ages. It has been used for various activities over the years noticeably in coal mines and postal routes.

According to the New Forest Pony Breeding Society, they may be any color “except piebald, skewbald, spotted or blue-eyed cream”. They can also have white markings only on their head and/or limbs, and have eyes of any color except blue.

england forest myukdestination equine pony
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There is also a maximum height for New Forest ponies (but no minimum): 14.2 hands (144 cm) from the ground to the top of their shoulder blades. During the winter, once most of the grass has been eaten and doesn’t grow back as quickly, the ponies may also eat holly and gorse to help supplement their diet.

Some ponies also choose to eat acorns, despite the fact that they are poisonous to them due to the high levels of tannin inside. Fortunately, the forest’s ecosystem has a way of taking care of the poisonous acorn problem.

Every autumn, during a time of year known as the Manage season, Commoners release their pigs, who are immune to the acorns, to gorge on them. The breeding takes place every year between April and July, with the mares’ gestation period lasting around 11 months.

At other times of year, the stallions are kept on private land, so for the most part, the ponies you will see across the New Forest are females. These measures have been put into place as many ponies and other freely roaming animals get injured or killed by cars each year.

If you’re driving in the New Forest during your holiday, be sure to carry an animal emergency hotline card so you’re prepared should the worst happen. For a small, island nation, we have a remarkable diversity of domestic animals and our lives, and the equine gene pool, are the richer for it.

exmoor pony ponies horse horses britain wild things shetland chamfron stud england move
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The Shetland is still a much-loved element of local culture in its remote homeland, but, as with so many of our domestic animals, it was Queen Victoria who can be credited for boosting its popularity as a pet and as a riding and driving pony. Risky This extremely rare pony from the Western Isle owes its existence to a group of people, comprising a priest, a doctor, a vet, a scientist and crofters, on Risky who, in the early 1970s, made a concerted effort to save the original crofter’s pony, a smaller, lighter-boned, less well-known relation of the Highland, which had dwindled to some 20 animals due to mechanization and the migration of islanders to the mainland.

The huge, powerful Shire, at about 17.2hh and 22cwt, came into its own, first, with the invention of Jethro Tull’s seed drill in 1701 and the switch from oxen to horses, then the Victorian expansion in transport and industry, and was used to pull barges along the developing network of canals, as well as the first omnibuses and trams, and for rubbish collection and brewery drays. The showy little Section A, with its pretty, dished, Disney face and big, dark eyes, is every small girl’s dream, yet the entire breed was nearly wiped out thanks to Henry VIII.

By the 18th century, however, Welsh farmers realized what a desirable commodity they had on their doorstep and began breeding them to sell at fairs. Ex moor Local pride and effort have saved our oldest and arguably most consistently pure-bred native pony, uniform in its compact, weatherproof physiology, mealy nose and hooded toad eyes that keep out the rain, although this is becoming a challenge on open moorland.

The breed was nearly destroyed when abandoned during the Second World War, but there are now 11 privately owned herds running wild on the moor, plus two owned by the Ex moor National Park Authority, and preservation work is continuing with a project to create a genetic database. New Forest Another pony with a complicated identity, the New Forest is bound up in ancient tradition: the ponies grazing freely beside roads and on village greens are owned by people who have ‘the rights of common pasture’, but, like the Dartmoor, they are not necessarily true natives, due to the difficulty of maintaining purity in open country.

The area from which it originates is a rocky, barren, moorland called Dartmoor in Devon, England. The sparse grazing and bleak conditions of this moor ensure that only the toughest of its inhabitants thrive.

england wild ponies horses shetland devon breeds horse pony countryside
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One of the earliest recorded references to these ponies is in the will of a Saxon Bishop, Twofold of Creditor, who died in 1012. Many years ago, tin mining was an important industry in the Southwest of England.

Many Dartmoor's were used as pack ponies, carrying the tin from mines to the surrounding towns. When the mines closed, most of the ponies were turned loose to roam the moor, except for a few retained by local farmers for use on the farms.

Co pyrite Notice: All images on this page are the property of Tribe Equus and Pat Howe. The Dartmoor Ponies A note from Pat:I live in a wet area of England which is upland and has herds of feral Dartmoor ponies.

Long toes, wall always below the sole all round, conceived, thin walls, relatively high heels, flared, and they trim by “wet weather” trimming i.e. they flare and break off. To some extent though although they are long and flared the feet seem to be self-regulating in respect of growth.

They have a variety of terrain which ranges from bog, mud, wet moorland, dry springy grassy moorland, tarmac roads, stone tracks. Each farm has grazing rights on the common for a certain number of ponies, cattle and sheep.

ponies pembrokeshire coast pony roscommon fun express geograph town ceridwen
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They are not natural herds as the mustangs are as a few stallions are put out on the commons and each has its own herd as opposed to young colts growing up and fighting it out for leadership. Some fillies go back on the commons for replacements, the rest, and the colts, are disposed of.

They are run through races and cattle crush type arrangements, so they can be tagged/ branded etc. The pony was standing in grass and it was not easy to get a clear view of the foot, so we thought picking it up may be easier.

This photo and the two below it, give you an idea of the type of environment where these points live and roam. These, I was sure with my wild horse like trim and the kids riding over anything the feet would soon get the idea.

The walls on the ridden horses never stay level with the sole, they always put down a “bead” of wall 10 to 2 o'clock around the sole. After studying the feral feet of these ponies I just now trim them to what the foot is trying to produce and accept the flaring (if indeed it is flaring) and that they want to ride on the bead of sole.

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