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Boerperd Horse Weird Facts Did You Know?

Boerperd Horse Weird Facts Did You Know?

  • The Boerperd actually goes by several different names including the Cape Horse and the Boer Pony. They can have either a three or five gait movement and are considered to be ideally suited for the various climates found in South Africa.
  • The first horses to arrive in Africa were African-Berber (Barb) crosses and purebreds that came on ships with Jan van Riebeek in 1652 with the Dutch East Indian Company. These horses were kept and bred along the coastal areas and then were sold to farmers in the area for transportation and farming use.
  • Different shipwrecks and imports of pureblood Arabians as well as the Iberian breeds such as the Andalusians and Isabella horses added size to the Arabian and Barb horses that originally formed the basis of the breeding programs. These horses became known as the Cape Horse and were extremely loyal, strong and sound tempered.
  • Thoroughbred influence is also seen in the Cape Horse and this lead to a strong industry in breeding military remounts, which hit is peak in the late 1700s.
  • African Horse Sickness was a serious and very fatal disease that literally killed thousands of horses in 1719, 1763 and 1870. Horses that survived were considered to be the strongest and genetically sound of the Cape Horses.
  • In the mid to late 1800s several other breeds where added to the bloodlines including the Hackney, Norfolk Totters, Cleveland Bays and Flemish Stallions. With this infusion the final transformation of the Cape Horse occurred, resulting in the modern Boerperd.
  • There are 8 major bloodlines in the Boerperd horses of South Africa. They are usually named either after the location where the bloodline developed of the family or breeders that developed and maintained the individual bloodlines.
  • There are several annual shows held by the South African Boerperd Breeders Society. These shows highlight the versatility of the breed in various competitions including dressage, show jumping, eventing, driving and in hand shows and events.
  • The Cape Boerperd Breeders Society was formed in 1948 to preserve and promote the Cape Boerperd horse. As of 1999 the Society has closed the Herd Book, which means that no outside breeds or lines may now be used in registered horses. There are approximately 650 horses currently registered through the South African Studbook.
  • With the increasing interest in local, national and even international endurance riding events and competitions, greater interest in the Boerperd as an endurance horse is being noted. These horses have always been known for their smooth gaited movement as well as their ability to travel great distances without the need to stop.
  • All Boerperd horses are inspected at the age of two and are then branded by the registry with a circle B brand. Only registered horses can be branded and the test is both a measure of temperament, athletic ability as well as conformation.
  • Although used as a competitive horse in a variety of disciplines, the Boerperd horse can also be an ideal livestock horse, general riding horse or trekking horse.
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