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Horse news from around the world.

In an article on a brewing civil war in France over high taxes among other things, I found this:
An estimated 20,000 horse-lovers marched through Paris to protest against tax increases imposed on riding stables

A Virus Changes Its Stripes: Human Outbreak of Eastern Equine Encephalitis
Aug. 22, 2013 — In the summer of 2010, the eastern Panamanian province of Darien experienced a phenomenon that had never been seen before in Latin America: a human outbreak of eastern equine encephalitis.

A y chromosome study

the speed gene
and what makes me giggle is the breed with the highest numbers of the speed gene is the (drum roll please) the Shetland. POW! and what is the Shetland? A Celtic pony that has undergone islandization and a bit of inbreeding to concentrate the gene that much. I am guessing that the reason old Indian ponies were so successful against the US Army's Morgans and TBs is because the Native peoples knew what they were doing when they bred their animals. Only a few old type Native American horses continue to exist...the Choctaw being the most prominant. I would love to know how the Choctaw compares to the Shetland with the speed gene concentration.

Re: Horse news from around the world.

frozen remains of a horse more than half a million years old have reluctantly given up their genetic secrets, providing scientists with the oldest DNA ever sequenced.

The horse was discovered in 2003 in the ancient permafrost of Canada’s west-central Yukon Territory, not far from the Alaskan border.

The Przewalski’s Horse, which lives on the steppes of central Asia, likely deviated from the lineage leading to modern domesticated horses some 50,000 years ago. (Photo: Joe Ravi)

And although the animal was dated to between 560,000 and 780,000 years old, an international team of researchers was able to use a new combination of techniques to decipher its genetic code.

Among the team’s findings is that the genus Equus — which includes all horses, donkeys, and zebras — dates back more than 4 million years, twice as long ago as scientists had previously believed.

“When we started the project, everyone — including us, to be honest — thought it was impossible,” said Dr. Ludovic Orlando of the University of Copenhagen, who coordinated the research, in a statement to Western Digs.

“And it was to some extent, with the methods available by then. So it’s clearly methodological advances that made this possible.”

Orlando and his colleagues published their findings this summer in the journal Nature; he discussed them today in a lecture at The Royal Society, London.

Previous to this, the oldest genome ever sequenced was of a 120,000-year-old polar bear — no small feat consider that the half-life of a DNA molecule is estimated to be about 521 years. By this reckoning, even under the best conditions, DNA could remain intact for no more than 6.8 million years.

But Orlando’s team was able to make the most of what they had for a number of reasons, he said.

Re: Horse news from around the world.


Pirot – During the protective archaeological works, carried out in parallel with the construction of Corridor 10, archaeologist Zoran Mitic found the remains of beautifully decorated chariot, assumed to be aged between 3,000 and 4,000 years and to have belonged to a Thracian from the elite of the time.
According to Mitic, this an unique and extremely important item, which he found near the village of Stanicenje.

“This is a chariot, drawn by two horses. My assumption is that the chariot belonged to a Thracian citizen,” Mitic told Tanjug.

He said that this is backed by the fact that, at the location where the chariot was found, was also found a tumulus – a tomb.

“Judging by the manner of burial, I guess that it was a member of Thracian people, not ordinary, but someone who occupied an important place in the hierarchy, due to the fact that the chariot is decorated with beautiful bronze applications,” he said.

Re: Horse news from around the world.

The Thracians could not have imagined life without horses—they even took their horses and chariots into the afterlife, to carry their souls to heaven. While many chariot burials have been found in Bulgaria, a recently discovered tomb from the site of Sveshtari is a rare example in which the horses were found standing upright, positioned with their heads resting on stone “cushions,” almost to appear as if they were still moving or standing, says archaeologist Diana Gergova of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences. The burial dates to the end of the fourth century B.C. and likely belonged to a member of the Getae, one of the most powerful Thracian tribes

Re: Horse news from around the world.

PARIS (AP) — Meat from horses used in laboratory procedures was sold as fit for human consumption and landed on French dinner tables, investigators said Monday.

Officers from France's National Gendarmerie, accompanied by food safety and veterinary investigators, carried out raids in 11 regions in southern France before dawn, arresting 21 people, according to a statement.

An official, speaking on condition of anonymity because details had not yet been released, said the animals had been used in laboratories — including that of drugmaker Sanofi-Pasteur — and then, instead of being destroyed, ended up in the food chain...