The Skyrian horse, native to the Greek island of Skyros, has been on this planet for approximately 2000 years. Believed to have been responsible for pulling the chariot of the mythological hero Achilles, these hearty animals are now facing possible extinction.
According to the National Geographic and Skyros Island Horse Trust, purebred Skyrian horses currently dwindle at a count of 200. The Skyros Island Horse Trust works as a nonprofit on the island to aid in the critical conservation of these ancient horses.
In an interview with the National Geographic, Amanda Simpson, who is responsible for running the trust, noted the impact that Greece’s delicate economic system has had on the effectiveness of protecting the breed.
‘“Even though it’s a rare breed and there’s status, there [are] no kinds of funding in terms of government resources.”’
Due to limitations in monetary funding for conservation efforts within the trust, emphasis has been put on community involvement and engagement with the horses.
The Katsarelias - Simpson projectSkyros is an island that has an easy-going and self organized character…
Such standards include the selective breeding of Skyrian horses due to being endangered, adopting out to locals on Skyros Island and monitoring the local population of feral horses on the island.
This post was based off of an article written by Kristin Hugo, writer for the National Geographic. To read the article, please click the following link: Tiny Real-Life Horse of Greek Myth Headed for Extinction.
To find out more about conservation efforts on protecting the Skyrian Horse, please click the following link: Skyros Island Horse Trust.