Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Meet Altamiro

Our young, purebred Sorraia stallion, Altamiro, has already had quite an interesting life and we are so fortunate that he has come to Ravenseyrie and established himself as the patriarch of our Sorraia Mustang Preserve.

I can think of no better way to introduce you to Altamiro's story then to direct you to the wonderful website of Leslie Town Photography. Leslie discovered us through her sister Janet who visited Manitoulin Island last summer and happened upon me at my gallery in the village. Upon learning about our efforts here at Ravenseyrie to help save the Sorraia, Leslie just had to come and capture some photos. Since our meeting, Leslie and her sister Janet (both devotees of the noble equine) have been helping to spread the word about our project by posting updates on Altamiro and his offspring, as well as providing online access to articles I have written for the EQUINE WELLNESS magazine and the MANITOULIN EXPOSITOR.
It gives me great pleasure to send you to Leslie's website for your proper introduction to Altamiro and to learn how Kevin and I were able to realize our dream of establishing a Sorraia Mustang Preserve. I hope you will follow the link and read how the crossing of Altamiro with rare, Spanish Mustang mares of Sorraia type can assist in strengthening the genetic resources of this primitive, ancestral horse and help keep the Sorraia horses from perishing.

Leslie Town Photography:


The photos shared in this blog have been taken by me--a rank novice--and are presented to give a layman's visual of Ravenseyrie. Leslie's professional photographs taken from her visit here last October are a must see, so please do follow the link.

For in depth information on the history of the Sorraia and their connection with particular Spanish Mustangs which share the Sorraia phenotype please follow this link to Hardy Oelke's educational website. (Note: Hardy's website hasn't yet been updated):



Erin Gray said...

He is beautiful! Love his dark grullo coloring!

Lynne Gerard said...

How terrific that you have decided to add your comments to the blog. I really appreciate this. While I find Altamiro to be definitely beautiful, my favorite shade of grullo is the color of your Sorraia stallion, Sovina. I hope one day that you will once again allow him to breed with select mustang mares which demonstrate many of the Sorraia characteristics. We are very pleased with Sovina's daughter, Zorita...who also has Sovina's wonderful lighter grulla colouring.

Thank you, Erin, for stopping by the Journal of Ravenseyrie.

erin said...

I wish you knew Sulphur's Tia in person. Zorita is somewhat lighter than Sovina, am pretty sure she got it from her dam. Tia always stood out alot with her coloring!
Maybe someday I will breed Sovina to mustang mares of the Iberian/Sorraia type. With all the mustang politics it is wearsome and hurts Sovina's mustang cross offspring. Meanwhile, Sovina is not breeding due to the bad ecnomny and there are too many horses here in the USA that it is becoming a problem.

Erin said...

Give 'Zoe' a HUG for me! She has always been the puppy like foal, always following and getting her nose into trouble! Once time she sneaked into the downstairs of the house when I left the door open. LOL!

Lynne Gerard said...

Erin wrote:
"Maybe someday I will breed Sovina to mustang mares of the Iberian/Sorraia type. "

It's good to read this from you, Erin, really, really wonderful, actually! This would be a tremendous help to create a vigorous outcross that goes a long way to consolidate the Sorraia phenotype that exists in some North American Mustangs and may one day be called upon by the purebred Sorraia breeders should the present genetic bottleneck continue to pose difficulties in present preservation efforts.

You and Sovina are located in a place where you generate a much broader impact and beneficial influence than what we are able to do being on the opposite coast. You are surrounded by so many Mustang mares of good Sorraia type characteristics. But, yes, indeed...it is wise to be extremely careful in these matters, especially with the economic recession affecting us all.

"Give 'Zoe' a HUG for me!"

I will do that, Erin. Thank you again for stopping by with your comments.

Spanish Sulphurs said...

I think it would be great to breed Sovina to more Sorraia Mustangs. I just hope that you wont breed him to Spanish Sulphur mares. That breed is just so rare and as you know represents the very last of the Spanish California breed. The last of the famed California vaquero's mount. I would hate to have the Sorraia go extinct just as much as having another rare and old Iberian breed go extinct like the Spanish Sulphurs. They are not just Mustangs just the same way the Sorraia is not just a ragged pony from Portugal. Both should be saved.

Tia sure gave a better head on Zorita! Looks like she got her sires back and shoulder. Having the Spanish Sulphur breed influencing this Sorraia project should be able to give some better genetic diversity. After all, the Sorraia is severely inbred and does show inbreeding depression. Maybe Altamiro will pass on his larger and longer head onto the foals from Zorita to give a more Sorraia appearance!

What is Altamiro's pedigree? I am wondering how closely Altamiro and Sovina are related.