Monday, March 25, 2019

How Fertile is a Mare's First Ovulation After Anestrus?

How fertile is a mare's first ovulation following anestrus? That was one of the questions addressed during a panel discussion at the 2018 American Association of Equine Practitioners Convention - and the responses differed significantly. If you have early-cycled your mare, what was your experience?

Read the article here, on

Friday, March 22, 2019

How Recipient Mares Affect Foals

Does the recipient mare in an embryo transfer situation affect the foal? Yes, but we have surprisingly little information about exactly how. has a recent article that examines the studies available. Most of the studies were looking specifically at the size of the recipient mare, but a couple of other study results were mentioned.

To read the article, click here.

Foundation Sire: Caprimond

Here is the next installment of Warmblood Stallions of North America’s Foundation Friday.  Every other Friday we will be featuring a foundation sire - one who has been influential in the development of warmblood breeds. We pull from the incredible archive of The Horse Magazine, published by Chris Hector of Australia. Thank you, Chris, for permission to draw on your expertise!


167 cm
Breeder: Jürgen Hanke, Hameln 

As of the 2016 Hanoverian Stallion Yearbook, Caprimond produced 375 competitors with winnings of €345,183. 316 dressage competitors, 35 at S level or above. His FN dressage rating is 124 (0.98) as against a jumping index of 51 (0.94). His Hanoverian dressage value is 141 and 79 for jumping, and once again, a massive 175 for type, including 198 for the head. Sadly because the top list only lists stallions that are "activated" for the new season, Caprimond - despite having the value of 175 - was replaced at the head of the 2014 list for riding horse type by Fürst Nymphenburg, who has a breeding value of 158 for type. It would have been nice to have had Caprimond’s unbroken record of leading the type standings from the first stallion book in 1999 until his death in 2014…
In the 2018 Hanoverian Stallion book, he has 381 competitors winning €356,192. His breeding value for type is still a massive 173 (number one on the Hanoverian top list for 2018 is Fürstenball with 167). He has a dressage value of 139 and a jumping value of 78. On the 2018 FN values for dressage sires of young horse competitors, he scores 120, and for sires of open competition horses, 121.
Caprimond was also the perfect schoolmaster for the Wahler children. At age 14, Theresa Wahler achieved her first S-level victory with him and one year later 12-year old Christoph Wahler presented the stallion in a show at the 2006 World Equestrian Games in Aachen. Caprimond also helped the children’s mother, Ingrid Wahler, rehabilitate and get her confidence back in the saddle after her riding accident a few years ago.
Caprimond was named elite stallion in 1995 and Trakehner Stallion of the Year 1998. Licensed offspring include Soulman, Inselmond, Sponeck, Catani K, Canaster I, Classic Touch, Solo Man, Tanzmeister, Contucci CWS, Campari Pur, and Caprigold.
His most famous offspring include the late Hohenstein, the Trakehner Stallion of the Year 2002; French Grand Prix team horse Noble Dream (Marc Boblet); and double European Young Riders Champion horse, then Grand Prix star at the 2017 European Championships, Atterupgaards Cassidy (Cathrine Dufour).
He has produced six dressage horses with winnings of more than €10,000, the most successful of these, Clinten 3, with €26,046. This is obviously a German total and ignores the Danish-bred Cassidy, who has won €165,380 since October 1, 2014.

To read the entire article, with pedigree, details of Caprimond's sons and daughters, on the Horse Magazine website, click here.
There are several stallion descendants of Caprimond in North America. Click on the following links to read about each of the ones on

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

IgG Levels in Foals

"Foals depend on antibodies they acquire from colostrum to fend off pathogenic assaults. In fact, the immune status of foals can be gauged by measuring the amount of IgG in serum, but at what age are IgG levels at their peak?"

This is the beginning of an article by Kentucky Equine Research about the importance of immunoglobulins in foals, especially immunoglobulin G (IgG), and when the levels peak. 

To read the article, click here.

Monday, March 18, 2019

Colostrum for Better Sperm?

According to a recently-released article on the Kentucky Equine Research site, the first milk of donkeys has an interesting effect on sperm. In studies in Spain, jenny "colostrum can be added to semen extenders to improve a multitude of semen characteristics after semen samples have been frozen and then thawed." This has not been studied in horses, but still, this study is showing interesting results, and is bound to lead to more research. 

Click here for an interesting read: A New Use for Colostrum

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Looking at the Future of the Hanoverian

Remi Vigneron (Viscount/Lanthan), first stallion to be licensed in Australia. Photo: Roslyn Neave

The Horse Magazine has posted an article by Christopher Hector that covers several topics that relate to Hanoverian horses and what the future of the Hanoverian looks like. The article reflects an interview with Werner Schade, the head of the German Hanoverian Verband. The Horse Magazine is based in Australia, and the two spoke during an inspection tour in Australia conducted by Werner Schade, US-based Volker Ehlers, and Australia-based Kevin Lewis.

The article starts with a look at Hanoverian breeding in Australia, and it's interesting to see what Australia produces, what bloodlines are being used, and how flattering Dr. Schade is in his evaluations of Australian breeding and how it fits into the international breeding community.

It's worth going deeper into the article, for an insight into the German view on Warmblood Fragile Foal Syndrome. Dr. Schade shares his opinion, and the word "hysterical" is used. Read the article for details.

Dr. Schade also describes his vision for the future of the Hanoverian, which he views as international; as well as a discussion of dressage, jumper and eventer breeding and some of the important bloodlines.

All in all, well worth a read: click here.

Monday, March 11, 2019

Florianus II Receives Crown Predicate from the KWPN-NA

Florianus II, Crown
Photo: Terri Miller

Coatesville, PA--- Iron Spring Farm's Florianus II received the prestigious Crown predicate from the Royal Dutch Warmblood Studbook North America (KWPN-NA). The Crown predicate is awarded to horses based on success in sport. Horses must be within the top 300 (dressage or jumping) in the WBFSH/FEI world rankings. Florinaus II had a long, winning Grand Prix dressage career in both Europe and the United States. In 2007, he achieved a world dressage ranking of 72, out of more than 500 horses.

Before his importation, his notable scores included a 70.450% in the Grand Prix Freestyle at CDI Falsterbo. Once he joined the Iron Spring Farm family, Florianus continued scoring in the 70s in Grand Prix throughout Florida and the East Coast.

Florianus' athletic ability was recognized from an early age. He finished fourth overall in his Stallion Testing in Münster-Handorf, earning a 9.5 on temperament and 9s for character and willingness. From there, he competed in the World Championships for Young Dressage Horses at Verden, before moving on to the small tour classes and Grand Prix.
While his primary job was as a performance horse, he has sired numerous winners in sport, breed shows and keurings. Rhythm & Blues (formerly Florencia B) earned top ribbons in the CDI3* Grand Prix classes in Europe in 2018. Five additional sons and daughters also compete at FEI in Europe. His daughter Kouture was Top Ten in the national KWPN-NA DG Bar Cup for 3-Year-Old Dressage Horses in 2018. Kouture was also successful as a youngster, winning the foal championship at Dressage at Devon in 2015. Another daughter, Floraya ISF, Star, was Reserve Grand Champion, Champion Young Horse and Champion Filly at Dressage at Devon in 2013. She is now a champion jumper.

Around the barn, Florianus is known as a kind, willing stallion. Under saddle, he had an incredible work ethic. His flexibility and scope, along with an outstanding ability to collect, helped him excel in the most difficult movements of passage, piaffe and pirouette.

Florianus represents the best modern sport horse bloodlines. He is sired by the legendary Florestan I, and is out of a States Premium Hanoverian mare by Damenstolz.
For the latest updates, photos and videos, please visit the Iron Spring Farm Facebook page and

About Iron Spring Farm
Top Friesian and KWPN stallions are available to North American breeders as part of Iron Spring Farm's four-decade commitment to the ISF American Advantage. By providing proven bloodlines, along with exceptional service, transparency and impeccable veterinary care, the ISF team helps riders and breeders achieve their sport horse goals. Ongoing expert advice and tools are also available so breeders can develop and market their offspring to the highest level. Iron Spring also offers a select number of talented Friesian and Dutch Warmblood prospects and broodmares for sale. Visit for more information.

Friday, March 8, 2019

Foundation Sire: Cor de la Bryère

Here is the next installment of Warmblood Stallions of North America’s Foundation Friday.  Every other Friday we will be featuring a foundation sire - one who has been influential in the development of warmblood breeds. We pull from the incredible archive of The Horse Magazine, published by Chris Hector of Australia. Thank you, Chris, for permission to draw on your expertise!


169 cm
Breeder: t. Essayan 

Cor de la Bryère is the stallion that revolutionized jumping horse breeding. His name is the one astute breeders like to see, especially on the mare line, for "Corde" tends to give great form over a jump. He was not only a sire himself but a sire of sires. He was a stallion of great vigor, and, as late as 1977, served a full book of 111 mares.
Although best known as a sire of jumping horses, Cor de la Bryère was also the sire of Corlandus, a World Cup Dressage Champion in 1989, and his sons Calypso I and Calypso II have proven useful sires of dressage horses. Former German Olympic team member Chacomo, ridden by Alexandra Simons de Ridder, was by Calypso I, as was Alexandra’s other FEI star, Champus.
In the WBFSH ratings for 1992/2001, Cor de la Bryère is ranked 18th with 28 points-earning progeny, but there are a staggering 20 own sons on the rankings: Calando I, II, IV; Caletto I, II; Calvados I, II; Calypso I, II, III; Cantares, Carneval, Carte d’Or, Casanova, Cavalier Royale, Cinzano, Constant, Contact, Corrado I, Cortez 679, Cosinus. There are also 12 grandsons of Cor de la Bryère in the standings – not to mention important stallions like Carthago and Burggraaf – who are out of Cor de la Bryère mares.
In the French annual review Monneron 2007-2008, Bernard le Courtois has gone through the FEI list of the top 2515 best showjumpers to compile a stallion ranking of the top 75 stallions, based on CSI winners. He finds that, after Almé, Cor de la Bryère is the most influential sire. Corde himself still holds 51st place on the rankings with 6 CSI winners – and that 14 of his sons make up 19% of the 75 best stallions in the world.
The most successful of these sons is Corrado I, who occupies 23rd spot with 11 winners – with four sons of Corrado also featuring in the top 75: Corofino is 30th with 10 representatives, Coriano – 43rd with 7, Indorado – 43rd with 7, and Clinton – 64th with 5.
Cor de la Bryère’s influence is also transmitted via the full brothers Caletto I & II. Although Caletto II does not make the top 75, he is represented by his sons, Caretino (24th with 11 winners) and Calvaro (65th with 5). Caletto I himself is in 65th place with 5 winners and is represented by his son Cantus (30th with 10). Cantus is the sire of Calido I who is in 19th place with 12 winners.
Another Cor de la Bryère son, Calypso II, is well represented on the top 75 through his son Contender, sitting in 5th with 28 representatives.

To read the entire article, with pedigree, details of Cor de la Bryère's sons and daughters, on the Horse Magazine website, click here.
There are quite a few stallion descendants of Cor de la Bryère in North America. Click on the following links to read about each of the ones on

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

About Mare's Milk

The folks at Kentucky Equine Research have posted a new nutrition article, this one about the qualities of mare's milk. As they point out, "The significance of the milk is often passed over because, unless we see droplets on the foal’s muzzle or whiskers...." The rest of the article fills in that gap. It looks at the proteins in mare's milk and other elements, in comparison to other animals' milk, like cows and goats. Worth a read.

Read Mare's Milk: A Closer Look

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

In Memoriam: LioCalyon of Wild Turkey Farm

In remembrance of LioCalyon, April 2, 1992 – February 26, 2019


It is with heavy, but full, hearts that we announce the passing of LioCalyon (Liostro x Calypso II x Sacramento Song). He was the cornerstone of Wild Turkey Farm and the horse that inspired Barb to start her breeding program. He put Wild Turkey Farm out there, into the world.

Barb purchased Lio after seeing a VHS tape of him sent by Butch and Lu Thomas.

“I will never forget being in my kitchen in Woodside when Lu had called me and said they were sending me a video of a young stallion that I just had to buy,” Barb recalls. “At that time, I was taking a break from the horses to raise my kids. I got the video and I almost didn’t watch it, but then thought, ‘Why not?’ I remember popping the video in the VHS, and Susie Hutchinson was riding him. I also remember calling Butch and Lu right after that and said, ‘Yes, vet him, buy him.’”

LioCalyon with Mandy Porter
Lio competed for over 10 years with multiple riders: Susie, Lu, Mandy Porter, Guy Thomas, Stevie McCarron, and Barb’s daughter Megan. He loved Spruce Meadows and jumped so well there in the 1.45m–1.50m divisions with Mandy. He took Stevie McCarron Wigley to her first Grand Prix. And when Megan needed a horse to show in Young Riders, it was Lio who filled in.

Lio retired from competition once he seemed to have lost his joie de vivre inside the ring. He came home, first to Woodside, Calif., and then to Oregon when Barb relocated the farm and business, and settled into his new job as breeding stallion. He was the farm mascot, the stallion everyone wanted to see, and he never disappointed. The statue that greets everyone at the top of the drive to the property is Lio, and he will be buried near there to look over the world that he helped to create.

Lio with his statue.

Now, his legacy will continue with his offspring that he never failed to stamp with his likeness.

“Lio’s offspring make me smile as he has stamped them all,” says Barb. “You can go through a field and point out a Lio baby—they all have his look.”

LioCalyon’s frozen semen will continue to be available to breeders. Please contact for more information. And for owners of Lio offspring, we would love to receive updates and photos to remember their sire.

We’ll never forget the special soul that was Lio. Rest in peace, our special friend, and gallop the green fields in heaven—you deserve it.

Fun facts about Lio

  • Lio loved licorice.
  • He was an Elite stallion with the American Holsteiner Horse Association.
  • He produced three approved sons: Peterbilt (BWP Elite Stallion), WT Lillix( AHHA, Oldenburg GOV), and WT Leapfrog (Oldenburg GOV).
  • Lio’s daughter, Dunstan Delphi, jumped at the 1.60-meter level with New Zealand’s Katie McVean. Together they placed 6th in the FEI World Cup Final at Leipzig in 2011 and jumped clear rounds at the 2010 WEG before the mare was sold to the Saudi Arabian Equestrian Federation.
  • Peterbilt competed at the 2011 WEG
  • In 2010, Lio won the USEF /Performance Horse Registry Leading Sire Award.

Visit LioCalyon's page on You can contact Barb through his page, or by email at

Friday, February 22, 2019

15% WFFS Carriers Reported by Labogen

LABOGEN genetic testing laboratory has launched a newsletter that will be released every other month. For their first issue, one of the topics was Warmblood Fragile Foal Syndrome. Laboklin, the genetic testing arm of Labogen, is "the only European laboratory to hold a Cornell University license to conduct the genetic test" for WFFS.

Along with other information and recommendations, Labogen reports that the 2018 results showed that 15% of the samples they tested were positive. They also reported that they had detected the mutation in English Thoroughbreds, and that UC Davis has reported finding the gene in English Thoroughbreds and Knapstruppers. 

Click here to read the February 2019 Labogen newsletter with the WFFS report, and you can also sign up there to receive the newsletter directly. The newsletter is in German, but the Google translation is better than average.

Click here for a FAQ about WFFS.

USDF Handling Clinic at Hilltop Farm, April 6–7th

Hilltop Farm, in Colora Maryland, has announced several events of interest to breeders in 2019. The first one, in April, will be a USDF Handling Clinic. Stay tuned for further events, including a Breeders Seminar and registry inspections. 

USDF Handling Clinic: April 6–7th

Photo by Stacy Lynne Photography
An exciting opportunity for those wishing to handle horses professionally at breed shows and inspections or those just looking to further develop their handling skills. The USDF Handler Clinic is a two-day educational event featuring clinicians Michael Bragdell, Sara Vanecek, and Kristi Wysocki. This clinic is open to amateurs, professionals, and young riders, but registrants must be age 18 or over to attend. Covered during the weekend will be handling techniques, business strategies for promoting yourself as a professional handler, and addressing safety and consistency with handling and competing young horses. For additional information on participating in the clinic or attending as an auditor click here.

Click to read more about these Hilltop stallions on

C Olivo



Fiti AL

Flamenco YM

Fürst Belagio FOD

Gallant Reflection HU

George Clooney

GK Calucci




Pikko del Cerro HU




Royal Prince

Royal Prinz




Vallado (aka Praise)

Woodbury's Harlequin

Portable Technology Benefits Equine Reproduction

Kentucky Equine Research posted a new article in January that takes a look at portable devices that measure semen quality. Evaluation is often done in a laboratory, but the portable devices can be used away from the lab, wherever the mare is. This enables the breeder to have results just before breeding, which could be critical information.

The question is: are the results from portable devices reliable? Read the KER article for the report.

Click here.

Foundation Sire: Voltaire

Here is the next installment of Warmblood Stallions of North America’s Foundation Friday.  Every other Friday we will be featuring a foundation sire - one who has been influential in the development of warmblood breeds. We pull from the incredible archive of The Horse Magazine, published by Chris Hector of Australia. Thank you, Chris, for permission to draw on your expertise!

16.2 hands
Breeder: E. Kuwet 

A son of Furioso II, Voltaire was really the first of the superstar performance stallions to go on and prove himself equally important as a breeding stallion.
In an obituary in Breeding News, September 2004, Henk Nijhof commented on his offspring: “The Voltaires have the perfect attitude for showjumping horses. They want to get across the barriers, they have the nerve to do this and combine this with power and carefulness, two issues that are very important for good showjumping horses. Usually, Voltaires have good manners for showjumping. But sometimes they are a bit short in the back, which you can see in the way they jump.”
Voltaire was represented by a staggering 28 jumpers in the WBFSH standings for 2000/2001 – and ranked 9th in the top 50 sires in the ten years from 1991 to 2000.
Jenneke Smit makes the point that Voltaire bred better stylists than he was himself: “As a showjumper, Voltaire was on the phlegmatic side; his short-coupled conformation and the way he finished his jump were far from ideal. Nevertheless, he produced blood-type, long-lined horses with good jumping form. Among these are Finesse (out of a mare by Gag xx), and the successful showjumper Altaire (Pele). Both horses excelled many times at the Grand Prix level under their respective riders, Emile Hendrix and Beth Underhill.”
Jan Greve sums it up:
“Voltaire meant a lot to me personally. Without him, I may not have started a stud farm. He was such a nice horse and so easy at a young age, and he’s been invaluable to the breeding industry. Perhaps he has been more influential as a damsire than as a direct sire. In any case, he’s a true foundation stallion whom we couldn’t have done without.”
Voltaire was in 11th place on the Monneron list with 19 representatives.
On the WBFSH standings for 2007, Voltaire was 22nd. In 2008 and 2009, Voltaire ranked 12th, by 2010, he had blown out to 24th, but shot up the standings again in 2011 to 11th, largely on the basis of the exploits of Michel Robert’s Kellemoi de Pepita (out of a mare by the Almé son Jalmé des Mesnuls) who won at Vigo in 2011, and at La Coruna, Chantilly, La Baule and Vejer de Frontera in 2010. By 2013, Voltaire had slipped to 56th.
Voltaire appears on the 2015/16 KWPN breeding values in 43rd place with a value of 126 (98%). He has produced 2749 progeny over the age of four, with 908 registered for competition (33.03%). On the 2016/17 KWPN standings, Voltaire has moved to 40th, with 2756 progeny over 4, and 914 competitors (33.16%). He has a jumping value of 125, conformation – 103, free paces – 99, free jumping – 107.

To read the entire article, with pedigree, details of Voltaire's sons and daughters, on the Horse Magazine website, click here.
There are several stallion descendants of Voltaire in North America. Click on the following links to read about each of the ones on

Thursday, February 21, 2019

Anne Gribbons Joins the Board of Directors of Dressage at Devon

Anne Gribbons and Let's Dance

Devon, Pennsylvania – Anne Gribbons has joined the Board of Directors of Dressage at Devon (DAD), announced Lori Kaminski, DAD President.
“Dressage at Devon is an historic show with strong traditions,” said Anne Gribbons. “Riding down the centerline at Devon is a wonderful memory for many top riders and a dream to those working their way up the levels. I look forward to being a part of it.”
“We are so happy to welcome Anne Gribbons to our Board,” said Robbie Kankus, Chair of the Board. “Anne is not only a top rider and breeder, she is active in the dressage industry and very generous with her time.  Her insights will be invaluable and we are looking forward to working with her.”
Anne Gribbons was the U.S. Equestrian Federation technical advisor for dressage from 2010-2012. She has trained and shown 15 horses of her own to Grand Prix and competed in 10 national championships, as well as in Europe, including the Aachen CHIO (Germany). Seven of her horses have been named U.S. Dressage Federation Horse of the Year, and she was a member of the 1995 Pan American Gamers silver-medal winning team for the United States. Anne is a Federation Equestre Internaionale five-star judge, and she was a member of the FEI Dressage Committee from 2010-2013. She was inducted into the Roemer Foundation/USDF Hall of Fame in 2013.  Anne is a columnist for the Chronicle of the Horse and a collection of those columns is now available in the book “Collective Remarks.”
The 2019 Dressage at Devon will take place September 24-September 29 at the Devon Horse Show Grounds in Devon, PA. For reserved seating, visit
About Dressage at Devon ( 
Dressage at Devon has been a premier North American Equestrian event since its founding in 1975.  It combines world-class dressage competition and the world’s largest open breed show with the international Fall Festival show and special activities for the entire family.  The six-day event attracts hundreds of riders from around the world and thousands of spectators.  Dressage at Devon is a 501(c) (3) PA non-profit organization, benefitting equine education.

Friday, February 8, 2019

New Breeding and Foaling Help Website

by Anna Goebel

A free interactive tool to help horse owners learn about reproduction and foaling in horses has been made available online by Equine Guelph. 

The gestation wheel, for example, is quite interesting. It explains the development of the foal from conception - including things like what's developing and how the fetal foal is moving. For example, the equine fetus starts head nods as early as day 40. If you enter your mare's breeding date, the "wheel" will tell you what's going on with your mare and foal month by month. For example, if your mare was bred last May 15, your foal would now be the size of a Dalmation. It would have started growing hair last month on poll, ears, chin, muzzle, and throat, and now be developing fine hair all over the body.

The project also includes checklists, videos, and other resources.

Equine Guelph was founded in 2003 at the University of Guelph in Ontario, Canada. It is "the Centre at the University of Guelph (not-for-profit) serving the horse and its industry through education, research, healthcare promotion and industry development."

Click here to read about the new online service.

Click here to go directly to the new Mare & Foal Care Tool.

Foundation Sire: Ramiro

Here is the next installment of Warmblood Stallions of North America’s Foundation Friday.  Every other Friday we will be featuring a foundation sire - one who has been influential in the development of warmblood breeds. We pull from the incredible archive of The Horse Magazine, published by Chris Hector of Australia. Thank you, Chris, for permission to draw on your expertise!

175 cm
Breeder: Clemens Frhr v. Nagel 

Conceived in Holstein, born in Westfalia, licensed at Neumünster, and himself an international performer under Fritz Ligges, Ramiro influenced nearly all European Performance Studbooks.
When Ramiro was presented for selection, he was described as the ideal type of the modern Holsteiner – strongly imprinted by his dam, tall and elegant, showing the topline of his grandfather, Cottage Son xx, with a powerful frame, a glorious face and large, clear eyes. His excellently formed neck, beautifully set, could still be seen – even when he was an old horse – and is stamped on his progeny. Ramiro displayed a very good walk, a normal trot, and a great canter.
The Holsteiner Horse, had this to say about Ramiro:
“Even as a yearling, Ramiro radiated high quality and sovereignty. As a two-and-a-half-year-old, he was runner up at the Holsteiner licensing in Elmshorn. He was very big, already standing 1.75 high as a three-year-old, with a clever head on a long, beautifully arched neck. Gentle to handle, just like his grandsire, Ramzes, he was very talented at jumping, which he not only proved by finishing the stallion performance test in Westercelle as the best of his year but also later at international level with Fritz Legges. However, at the time he was already a stud stallion and occasionally tested his rider with a trial of strength.”
Ramiro’s influence on the Dutch Warmblood breeding was, and still is, of utmost importance. The Dutch bestowed the title "Horse of the Year" on Ramiro in 1992.
In the survey of the world’s top 75 jumping sires that appears in the French publication Monneron 2007-2008, Ramiro (who, thanks to frozen semen, was still producing foals 12 years after his demise) is ranked 23rd with 11 CSI winners, while his son, Robin I Z, is 43rd with 7 representatives.

To read the entire article, with pedigree, details of Ramiro's sons and daughters, on the Horse Magazine website, click here.
There are several stallion descendants of Ramiro in North America. Click on the following links to read about each of the ones on