The Australian Draught Horse presents a crossbreed between four worldwide famous purebred draught horse breed. Although they were brought in Australia from all around the world, the name itself tells us that their country of origin is Australia. The Clydesdale, Percheron, Shire and Suffolk Punch are the four horse breeds that had a great importance for developing of the Australian Draught. Sometimes light bloodlines that had part draughts, as well as the Belgian Heavy Horse also had influence.
The first imports of heavy, draft horses were at the middle of the 19th century. Each horse breed from the above mentioned had its popularity spread through the continent. The most important breeding and farm horses were in Tasmania, formerly known as Van Diemenís Land. The Van Diemenís Land Company had a big role and imported the Shire horse, which later was exported to throughout the other states of the continent.
A need for a draught horse was increased in the period of gold rush, when European settlers promote their draught horses being familiarity with the, agriculture development, as well as working animals in the forest, civilian transport and pulling wagons.
The physical characteristics of the Australian Draught Horse are a combination of the four pure breeds and occasionally some light horse blood. Their head is with average size and broad forehead. Eyes are clear and reflect their gentle character. The ears are very alert. Other common features include a neck of medium length; muscled shoulders that blend into the withers, chest and back; a wide chest, hip and hindquarters; and feathers on the legs which can be light to medium.
This horse breed is quite tall and stands between 16 and 17.2 hands. They weigh 1320-1980 pounds (600-900 kg). They can appear in any solid color, but white markings on the head and other parts of the body are not accepted if excessively present, except below the knee.
All draught horses are known for their capacity for work, so itís understandable that so is the Australian Draught. They have excellent stamina and are used for draft work in small farms throughout Australia, in ploughing competitions, harness, in forestry when machinery is not viable and as pleasure horses. They are also used in led and novelty.
The first Clydesdale Stud Book was established in 1915, but hadnít certain breeding program, which was not a case with the Australian Draught Horse Stud Book Society that was established in 1979 and in fact has aimed to promote the work of these horses throughout Australia and also has an exact breeding program that preserve the identity of the Australian Draught Horse. Everyone can be a member of the ADHSBS, not only the owners of the specific breed.
Take this challenge to solve a horse puzzle where a kind hearted creature, with good temperament and strength is hiding in the pieces of the jigsaw. Press and hold left mouse button on one piece and place it in the right position. Enjoy and have fun!