Kiger Mustangs are
wild horses found in
southeastern Oregon, US. They are named
after their natural habitat, mostly in the Kiger Canyon. They are related to Spanish horses
brought to North America during the 1600’s and that until recently, this
bloodline was thought to be extinct.
As a result of a roundup of wild horses in 1997, the Bureau
of Land Management (BLM) identified a group of horses with very similar traits.
They were separated and subject to genetic testing conducted by the University
of Kentucky which showed that the bloodline is not extinct. Their numbers were estimated in 2013 to be 101 horses in both the Kiger and
Riddle Mountain Horse Management Areas. Every 3-4 years the BLM conducts a wild
horse roundup and auction off some of the Kiger Mustangs to the public. There is now a Kiger Horse Association and
Registry devoted to the breed. The State of Oregon recently declared the Kiger
Mustang a State Horse.
Kiger Mustangs have been the model of the typical mustang
and readily recognizable in animated films and models of horses. They are most
often a dun color but also come in other solid equine colors. They generally
stand 13 to 15 hands are compact, agile, and intelligent. They are generally
bold but gentle and calm; they are used for pleasure riding, performance
competition, and athletic competitions.