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A mustang horse is a horse that was bred in the wild through a process of natural selection, and they are generally strong, hardy and aware of their surroundings. Discover how many mustangs make for easy keepers with information in this video on horses and breeding.
Hi. I'm Rick, I'm out here at Travis Equestrian center. Today, we're going to talk about what is a mustang horse. This is my mustang. His name's Tanner. He's about seventeen years old. He was caught in Nevada. He was caught by helicopter. Most mustangs, if you're looking at them, it's kind of hard to say if a horse is a mustang or isn't. They're bred in the wild. They're naturally bred. They go through a natural selection process. So, there's not a lot of breeding. We don't get to pick whether the horse has good feet or whether we like the color, et cetera. Mother Nature takes care of that in the wild. So, this horse is pretty much as natural as you're going to get. He's a little bit larger than most mustangs, because people have said that they think he either has Friesen or some sort of draft horse in him. The white marks right here on him is not marking, it's more or less a mustang brand, and all mustangs will have a brand here. These first two symbols tell what year he was caught or when he was born, and then these other symbols right here, describe his color, markings and identifies this specific horse. He was caught, I think, when he was one. If you notice his feet -- you quite can't see it in the grass here -- but his feet are a little bit larger. He's got nice, good sized draft feet, which people say most mustangs have good feet. Because they're bred in the wild, because humans aren't involved in their breeding, the horses with bad feet don't make it. So, natural selection says, "Your feet ain't good. You can't keep up with the herd. You can't feed yourself. You die out, therefore, you don't reproduce." So, the only horses that reproduce in the mustang breed are the ones who have strong feet, who don't colic, who have the ability to run and flee and stay alive in the wild. If you can tell, my horse is a little heavy right here. He's a little heavier than he should be. He's what's called "an easy keeper". Most mustangs tend to be easy keepers. Because they were raised and their genetics, their parents and grandparents, all had to live and survive in the mountains without us giving them alfalfa, grain, et cetera, they've had to make it on scraps. So, most mustangs tend to be easy keepers. I can't go into specific conformation on mustangs, because they vary. It depends on what area they were caught in and what horses were released. Back when cars came around in the 1900's and you didn't need horses anymore, a lot of farmers were letting their big, large draft horses free. Well, they blended in with the mustangs and, through breeding, you got a bigger, larger mustangs where the drafts were let loose. In Nevada, there were a lot of drafts, a lot of pulling horses, so your mustangs out in Nevada tend to be a little bit on the larger side. Again, this guy's name is Tanner. He's seventeen years old. He's a great example of a mustang -- strong, hardy, very sensitive. You can tell his head went up there. He doesn't miss much. He's learned to survive well. Since he was caught in the wild, we don't know if he watched his mom get eaten by a predator or whether he lost a brother or he saw someone else in his herd. So, he's very alert. Very sturdy. Work -- very willing. I think they're great horses and they're one of the best breeds out there.