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Parco Naturale dei Nebrodi

The Sanfratellano Horses will never die out


breed features

The program established during the "XXXVIII Rassegna mercato del cavallo sanfratellano" (Sanfratellano Horse Fair), which has recently taken place in S. Fratello, promotes the return of a group of Sanfratellani to the 98th Horse Exhibit in Verona.

After a compulsory interruption, the return to the exhibit in Verona seemed almost forced, at least to deny the false news on the Sanfratellano horse as a breed faced with the danger of extinction.

Actually, the Sanfratellano horse population has never run the risk of extinction. The breeders have always been interested in the perpetuation of this genetic richness; they have faced and overcome the several environmental difficulties and continue the breeding activity in the Nebrodi Mountains.

The results of the survey carried out in 1991 by the Associazione provinciale allevatori of Messina in the breeding central area (within the Municipalities of Acquedolci, Cesarò, Caronia, San Fratello, Sant'Agata Militello, Alcara li Fusi, Militello Rosmarino, and Capizzi), show that the number of horses has not changed; in this area 3.852 specimens of Sanfratellani have been registered and 1.776 of them are brood females.


Although the local and national press has given importance to the Sanfratellano horse, it keeps living in the original environment as if it was a useless and wild animal, but it should be given more relevance because of its morphological and functional features.

Important scientific studies have been carried out on the wonderful horse of the Nebrodi, but they have not been exploited; these studies aimed to define the identity which still nowadays is mistaken between population and breed.

The Sanfratellano horse will never die out, thanks to its breeders' courage to fight for its survival. The institutions and in this particular case Unire must promote the development of the potential richness of the horse of the Nebrodi through a concrete technical-financial support.

An union between different organizations is being created, and in the last days the Associazione Nazionale del cavallo sanfratellano was created thanks to the Associazione Regionale Allevatori of Palermo.