The first study visit for the horse course brought me to the strong, heavy Swedish coldblood stallions that spend their days moving logs and cutting grass (read it here!). This second study visit could not have been more different. For our project work in this course – which I will explain more about in a next post – we went to visit an Arabian horse stud. For those who know little about horses, the Arabian breed is often considered the most elegant of all, famous for its light footed trot. This day we saw some of the most highly judged Arabians of Sweden, but we also learned there is more to this breed than just its beauty.
“It’s hard to find an equestrian discipline where not one of the Arabians bred by Slängsboda has been successful at.”
The farm we visited is called Slängsboda and is owned by the family Wale, who have a long history when it comes to breeding Arabian horses. In the past the stud housed 60 horses at a time and at least 150 foals have been born over the years. During the eighties a second location in Kentucky served as a base for marketing the horses in America and Canada. Nowadays they have decreased in size but aim to maintain breeding top quality Arabian horses. This year they have had a very successful season in regard of the breeding shows.
A field with a view
Louise Wale and her mother Christina Wale showed us around on their stunning location near the Stockholm Archipelago. It was a lot of fun to ‘meet’ the broodmares and their foals. Both Louisa and Christina are very passionate about the Arabian horse breed and their own horses in particular. They showed what they are looking for in their breeding goal by demonstrating certain features from their own mares. I loved how they really focused on horse health and cared about strong legs and durability. The results of their breeding efforts are impressive: It’s hard to find an equestrian discipline where not one of the Arabians bred by Slängsboda has been successful at.
They were extremelycurious and cuddly…
In the upper left Lovisa with Myrica, in the upper right Amanda with Nikolajev and Annika with Baidora. And this lovely nose belongs also to Baidora.
After cuddling foals and mares – we could have stayed forever – there was some work to do. We had to collect some data which we will analyse as part of our project. First we took the body condition scores (find out more here) of several broodmares. Later we took feed samples from the hay, both this year’s harvest and last year’s harvest. In a next post I will tell you all about this project, but it’s just a bit much to fit it all for now.
If you want to know more about Slängsboda Arabians, definitely check out their website, which is also available in English. In case you have any questions or remarks, please comment below.