1, 2, 5... Poneys Skyros !
1, 2, 5... Poneys Skyros !
Treat yourself, give us pleasure and, above all, help us to preserve an almost extinct breed!
A spot of history
The Skyrian Horse is a breed of miniature horse from the Greek island of the same name. Long used for threshing, Skyrian Horses lived in semi-freedom on the island where they cohabited with other local species. With the mechanization of agriculture and over-grazing by goats, their place within the island has gradually been reduced. Today there are no more than 200 Skyrian Horses in the world.
What is Bouillon de Poney?
Bouillon de Poney is an association which was created in February 2014, one of its aims being to help preserve the Skyrian Horse. It brings together a group of enthusiasts from many different walks of life around a common goal: the survival of an immense cultural heritage.
Step 1: Showing what the breed is capable of
For Bouillon de Poney, the main issue for the survival of the race is showing what it is capable of. It seemed important to us to find a new goal for the Skyrian Horse, to make it known to as many people as possible, and to get the riding world to take an interest in it. Because the Skyrian Horse is small, extremely sociable, curious and very gentle, it seemed to us perfectly suited to equine therapy. It was at this point that we acquired Achilles and Orion, two young Skyrian Horses born in Scotland and generously offered to our association.
Here is a short summary of Achilles' work. Orion does the same with another association the Poney Instituteur (the Pony Teacher).
Step 2: Breeding Skyrian Horses in France
The work carried out over the past two years with our two ponies was in preparation for a far more ambitious project: to start breeding the Skyrian Horse here in France.
Our aim today is to import from Greece a herd of breeding stock (two stallions and three mares) whose lineages are distinct enough for us to be able to enlarge the population of Skyrian Horses. We want to do this for three reasons:
1. to meet the emerging demand here, in France, as well as in Belgium,
2. to develop equine therapy projects, to emphasize the immense potential of these rare ponies, and to bring happiness to handicapped people such as Coline with whom we have been working with Achilles,
3. to support the Greek breeders by aiding their production through the sale of poneys, and by helping to increase the genetic inheritance and encourage scientific research which remains for the moment all too rare.
Allocation of funds
The three mares which we have chosen have been bought directly by new owners, individuals interested in safeguarding this breed and ready to set up breeding here in France.
The association decided to buy and keep two stallions. This purchase was made possible thanks to a 2,000 euro prize awarded by the Banque Populaire Loire and Lyonnais - Bouillon de Poney won the coup de Coeur prize in its Trophées Solidarité (Solidarity Trophy) competition in 2015.
Today we are asking for your help to raise 3,800 euros towards the cost of bringing the five Skyrian Horses to Grenoble. The total cost of the transport is 5,500 euros. We already have part of the required sum thanks to a generous donation from the local agency of the Crédit Agricole bank and this year’s membership fees. But we need your help to complete the budget. Of the 3,800 euros we are hoping to raise, 3,500 euros will be paid directly to the specialist international carrier who will bring the Horses to France. The additional 300 euros will be devoted to the rewards for the contributors to this participatory financing.
The trip is scheduled for early March. Which leaves us three months to raise the necessary funds and prepare for the arrival of the ponies. The journey itself will only take a few days, and the ponies will arrive in the Trièves region in the Alpes before going to their respective new homes!
If we are fortunate enough to succeed in reaching our target, any additional donations will go towards improving the everyday of our two new stallions (life in an Alpine meadow with other horses) and, above all, to meeting possible veterinary and other expenses related to the breeding activity. We also hope to have the stud book of the breed recognized here in France, which will necessarily incur additional costs.