Icelandic Ponies

The ponies found in Iceland are unique – they’ve always been bred in the country and other ponies cannot be imported to stop the breed from being ‘tainted’. Very friendly to tourists, the ponies are extremely hardy as they have to suffer the freezing Icelandic winters (which can get as cold as  −25 °C ) with no protection. They’re actually tiny, no bigger than Shetland ponies, and play a large part in Icelandic life. The ponies are used obviously for leisure riding, but they also take part in races during all times of the year. Some ponies are bred for their meat, most of which is actually exported to Japan. The most unusual use of the ponies is in fact as a sort of sheepdog – farmers use them to round up sheep on the Icelandic highlands…

     

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