Video: Estonian Horse (clipper)
Estonian horse (Estonian horse), or Klepper (Estonian klepper) - an ancient northern forest Estonian horse originated more than 2,800 years ago from primitive forest horse. Traveler Adam Bremen, who lived in the 11th century, wrote that Estonians are rich in gold and good horses. The breed name "Klepper" is obsolete and is no longer used.
Since the 17th century, Estonian horses were first exported to the northern, and later to the central provinces of Russia, where they significantly influenced the formation of the Vyatka, Mezen and other local breeds.
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The first documents concerning attempts to improve the Estonian horse refer to the founding of a stud farm in Tori in 1856. This breed was crossed with stallions of riding and harness breeds. The best offspring resulting from these attempts became the backbone of the Tori horse. One of the most successful producers, Vansikasa was well known for its indomitable and exceptional draft power.
After the First World War, a breeding program was established to preserve the breed, whose numbers have dropped significantly. The breed society and studbook were founded in 1921. By 1937 only 13 stallions were in use and the Estonian horse became inbred. This led to the maturation of the horses later, and this slowed down the development of the breed. With the mechanization of transport and agriculture, the Estonian horse almost died out, with the exception of the islands of Saaremaa, Vormsi, Muhu and Hiiumaa, where purebred breeding has survived. Between the end of World War II and the end of the 20th century, the number of Estonian horses fell from 16,000 to 500.
The Estonian horse has retained its qualities and appearance due to the slight influence of other horse breeds.
Horses are distinguished by their strength, unpretentiousness, energetic temperament, good nature, resistance to disease, longevity and good adaptation to the local climate. A mare named Tenki (born in 1946) lived to be 40 years old. The animals spend most of the year in pastures and only in winter are they transferred to a stall.
The Estonian horse is easy to handle and inexpensive to maintain. It is successfully used in agricultural and transport work, and in recent years in equestrian sports for teaching horse riding for children and adolescents, as well as for vaulting and tourist trips.
Height at withers - about 133-147, oblique length 148, chest girth - 176, metacarpals - 18.7 cm.Live weight from 420 to 450 kg, newborn foals weigh about 40 kg.
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The predominant colors are red, karak and dun. Light-colored clippers have a dark belt along the back. Summer coat is short and smooth, winter coat is long with a dense, greasy undercoat that repels moisture.
All Estonian horses have beautiful, rounded shapes. They have a broad-forehead, small head with a straight profile; short ears; lively eyes; short, muscular neck; wide and deep chest; wide, low withers; wide, short, straight back; muscular, sloping croup; short, dry limbs, with small brushes; strong hooves.
Currently, there are about 1000 purebred representatives of the breed in Estonia.