Kaimanawa horses destined for slaughter
120 lives will be lost if good home can’t be found for Kaimanawa horses from this year’s Department of Conservation
180 Kaimanawa horses are to be removed in the muster and the Kaimanawa Heritage Horses Welfare Society is seeking
suitable homes as an alternative to the horses going to slaughter.
The official count from the aerial census conducted by DoC in March indicates there are 469 Kaimanawa horses within the
designated management zone and another 38 horses outside of the area. It is estimated that 393 of the horses within the
zone are adults and 76 are juveniles. DoC is responsible for maintaining the wild horse population at 300 horses, making
the mustering and removal of excess horses necessary. The Kaimanawa Heritage Horses Welfare Society works closely with
DoC to rehome as many of the wild horses as possible but those that don’t find homes, go direct to slaughter.
Kaimanawa horses have shot to fame in equestrian circles since the last muster in 2012. They’ve earned their celebrity
status by proving both trainable and talented. Some that were mustered and rehomed in 2012 are already out competing and
winning in open competition. These horses have inspired a number of discerning horse owners to consider taking the
plunge and adopting a wild horse but many more homes are needed for the 180 stallions, mares and foals that will
otherwise be trucked straight to the abattoir from the muster in late May.
Kaimanawa Heritage Horses commits to taking on all of the unplaced foals and yearlings, but horses as young as two years
and everything older, are all facing the abattoir unless more homes are found. Kaimanawa Heritage Horses have
applications for approximately 60 of the 180 horses but need to more than double that number, in less than 2 weeks.
Applications for adopting a Kaimanawa horse from the 2014 muster will close on April 30th. Application forms and further
information can be found on http://kaimanawaheritagehorses.org/
or phone 09 431 6111.