Surname: Icelandic horse
Other names: Icelander, Iceland pony
Latin name: Equus islandicus
size: up to 1.4m
mass: 300 - 350kg
Older: 25 - 40 years
Appearance: black, brown, red, white or gray fur
Sexual dimorphism: No
Nutrition type: Herbivore (herbivor)
food: Grasses and herbs
distribution: Breeding horse, therefore worldwide distribution
original origin: Iceland
Sleep-wake rhythm: diurnal
habitat: open meadows and fields
natural enemies: /
sexual maturity: between the second and third year of life
mating season: possible all year round
gestation: 11 months
litter size: 1 cub
social behavior: Herd animal
Threatened with extinction: No
Further profiles of animals can be found in the Encyclopaedia.
Interesting facts about the Icelandic horse
- The Icelandic horse, Equus islandicus or Iceland pony is a - as the name already suggests - originally in Iceland based horse breed.
- The forerunners of the Icelandic horse arrived in Iceland with the Vikings from Scotland and Scandinavia about a thousand years ago. Through intersections of Celtic ponies and fjord horses, the horse type was created over the centuries, which today is also known under the name Icelanders.
- The Icelandic horse is considered one of the oldest horse breeding ever.
- It was not until the late 19th century that the Icelandic horse arrived in Great Britain, where it became increasingly popular as a workhorse.
- Today, Icelanders are found in many countries around the world and are considered popular mounts for tournaments and recreational sports. There are about 250,000 copies worldwide.
- Icelandic horses bred abroad may not be returned to their original homeland, as Iceland has a strict import ban for horses.
- The most striking feature of the Icelandic horse is its long, frizzy mane.
- With expressive eyes and small ears, Icelandic horses have a friendly countenance.
- Despite its small size, the Iceland pony is primarily used as a mount for adults, but can also be mounted by children.
- However, Iceland ponies can not be mounted until they reach the age of five, as they have only then grown into adult animals.
- They reach a stick height of up to 140 centimeters and are of robust stature with strong legs and a muscular back.
- The shimmering coat of Icelandic horses can appear in all colors and color combinations except for Tiger checks.
- Iceland ponies are very popular because of their self-confident, independent and yet sensitive nature. Their temperament is easy to regulate, if they are trained accordingly.
- Despite their chubby stature, Icelandic horses are talented workhorses who can not only be willing to perform, but also very ambitious.
- Icelandic horses are reluctant to stay in confined spaces because their intense desire for freedom requires that they be kept in a run-out stable. Even in open stables on pastures, they feel very well.
- They are extremely weatherproof, as their winter coat grows very dense and long.
- As a very frugal horse breed, the Iceland pony does not have any special requirements for feeding.
- With appropriate welfare, these horses can be up to forty years old.