Historic news for the skyrian horse

Historic news for the skyrian horse

Bon Voyage….. Kalo Taxidi ……Norman and Jasonus……. June 2016

For the last three years, here at Skyros Island Horse Trust, we have been working very hard on promoting the role and value of the Skyrian horse in Greece and abroad,  so that some horses can go further afield and promote the breed and the island, while demonstrating the value and worth of the Skyrian pony to the wider world, thus allowing us the opportunity to continue to breed from wonderful quality maiden mares .

For the very first time two Skyrian geldings, Jasonus (8 years old) and Norman (7 years old), have  legally left Skyros for a wonderful new home in Belgium http://www.villers.be/en with passports issued by the official registry of the Skyrian horse, the Skyrian Horse Society, the only Greek horse breed organisation able to issue passports to date.

This has been a long process and has actively involved those who care about skyrian horses and an enormous amount of time, research and lots of Greek paperwork !! Even at the eleventh hour, 2 hours before the ferry was to leave with the ponies on board, we had news from the state vet that there were still some pieces of paperwork missing – but luckily Yannis Vassiliou http://www.hellenic-equine-transport.gr/  stepped in and clarified the whole thing.

We would like to  say an enormous thank  you to:  Natasha Skrini and her family for all their support and contributions  in many  different ways towards Jasonus over the years. Although Jasonus was born at the project and has always lived and been looked after by us, he has always been owned and loved by Natasha  and she very generously donated him  to the project  to be  we hope an  excellent ambassador for the skyrian horse.We would also like to thank Giouli Daskagianni, equine vet now based in Skyros (who is a godsend as all their immunizations needed to be recorded by a registered vet so it would have been impossible without her presence in Skyros), Nikos Kritikos, president of The Skyrian Horse Society,   Yiannis Vassiliou, international horse transporter, Rachel Etherington for all her passport research and Kleopatra Triantafyllou  GAWF equine vet BUT also all the amazing volunteers and local children who have helped us bring up these two wonderful ponies, to care and train and look after them in the best possible way.

Their journey started on Friday with a vet check from Giouli,  which they passed with flying colours, here is Norman having his vet check.

Next the  horsebox arrived  and after finally pics with their passports,  they loaded into the lorry like they had been doing it all their lives, we were so proud of them… We were crying, and they were really just interested in the yummy hay in the lorry.

They crossed on the ferry , had all their paperwork stamped in Evia by the officially recognized State vet and headed onto Athens to be stabled until Monday, for the next leg of their trip . The boys have really had to cope with a new world and we have been told by Yiannis that they have been wonderful and very well behaved.  We are talking with him every day as their journey proceeds, today they are in Italy as they head towards Belgium …  We are so proud of our boys …

They still have a long journey ahead of them and will arrive in  Belgium http://www.villers.be/en on Friday evening. We have volunteers based in Belgium and Germany who will be visiting them very soon and will help their new carers understand their personalities, quirks and foibles… Also to make sure they are not getting too fat on all that lovely green grass !!!

So with great sadness we say goodbye to two of our home-bred geldings, now grown-up babies, Jasonus and Norman… but also with excitement. A historic moment…  as two lovely skyrians go to a wonderful new home in Belgium,  where we know they will love and enjoy them as much as we have, whilst giving us the opportunity  to now breed from two of the wonderful maiden mares we have bred, that just could not be bred from  due space restraints.

Exciting But Belated Newsletter – Spring 2015

the boys relishing their hay

The boys relishing their hay!

Hi everybody! The 2-leggeds, although great at looking after all of us 4-leggeds, are not so good at telling the rest of the world our news.

Hay Appeal

So I, Hermes, as the firstborn of the project, have decided to take it upon myself to tell you how things have been going since spring here at the farm. Firstly and most importantly an enormous thank you to all the amazing 2-leggeds who supported our hay appeal… Without your generosity our carers would be besides themselves by now. It is great that this hay year (we  horses measure the year from April to April = horse food year!) we have no worries about our hay supply and us 4-leggeds know that this is the most massive relief for our 2 main carers Stathis and Amanda. We hear them talking about something called a crisis, economy and lots of other words we cannot repeat here! But they know our food is safe and we eat an enormous amount of it and that gives them great relief.

So we managed to get 21 tons at the end of April – that’s 980 bales, all on one lorry and an enormous trailer (which couldn’t get through the farm gates!) Rather a lot of expletives from the six-woman team (including a very special guest who I will tell you about later) it took to unload it, but they seem to have been written down in island history beginning the unloading at 10.30pm and ending at 5.30 am (they were not happy bunnies!).

Cleaning up before 980 bales come !

Cleaning up before 21 tons of hay arrives !

Lorry outside the gate 11 tons

Lorry outside the gate 11 tons

Famous guest helping out.

Famous guest helping out.

cleaning the hay barn argh!!

cleaning the hay barn argh!!

Those two leggeds really broke a sweat

Next, another large lorry of 450 bales in August, not quite such hard work as before …. Phew!!!

Alongside this we have a regular 3-weekly delivery of 60 bales of yummy oat straw every couple of weeks and the occasional bale of alfalfa for our lovely foal and oldies and needies …. We fatties also get to eat a bit of it, if we’re lucky!

August delivery and our Mum chucking hay

August delivery and our Mum chucking hay

Got Man help this time August!!!

Got Man help this time August!!!

Oat straw in the stable

Oat straw in the stable

Hay everywhere!!

Hay everywhere!!

The humans were also quite clever and ordered two more 11-ton lorries at spring prices to be delivered at the end of October and January.

But the 2-leggeds do keep going on about capital control. We are not really sure what this is (neither are they) but from what my horse brain understands it made it hard over the summer for the trust bank account cheques which are in pounds sterling to be banked in Greece as Greek banks can’t honour them,  apparently this has now changed  which should make things easier…..

us and 2 legged wanting to say a big thank you.

4-leggeds and 2-leggeds saying a massive thank you to all who helped with our hay appeal.

So we would like to thank a long list of such amazingly generous 2-leggeds who have helped in many different ways, who all in our minds are Skyrian Horse angels and without your support all forty of us 4-legged Skyrians would just not be able to survive.

Phokion Potamianos – Homem
The Whalley family
Maurits Menns
Robert Stanley
Merja Sten
Colin George
Karen Shaw
Anna Ruel
Alexis Drossos
Julia Sprott
Inga Sega and family
Kel Portman
Tina Allen Colessar
Richard Horsfall
Shaina Goudie
Adelia Greer
Georgios Tziakos
Monica Olsen
Rednerium Myrto Papa
Polly Campbell Preston
Cathy Wren
Christine Trotter
Kostas Zakaropolous
Lachlan Roberston
Mary Simpson
Micheal Clark
Julia Charlton
J Hynes
K Betts
J. Em Schofeild

Karen Hill
Thanasis  Sofos
Julia Charlton
Meret Stoppia
Elaine Chambers
Jan Jordan
Rosie Bower
Kelly Lambrou
Ernie Woolf
Debbie Howells
Kaela Schaefer
Cecile Kold Skensved
Sarah Helena Barmer
Jill Brotz
Elaine Chambers
Skyros Holidays

horseandman.com and the donations that came from the ‘Drop in the Bucket Fund’.

We so hope that we haven’t forgotten anyone and if we have, we are really sorry – let us know so that we can add you to our list of supporters!

Emma Massingale working with the stallions

Emma Massingale working with the stallions

As we said earlier we had the most incredible surprise this year – along with the hay came Emma Massingale (I have to say her support in hay unloading was phenomenal – I am not sure she signed up for that!!!). One of the most incredible liberty trainers/horsewomen who is also massively insightful and really courageous came to visit the project for 4 days. It was a wonderful learning experience for both horses and humans and a rare opportunity for us all, on this very remote island, to get such exceptional and expert training which enables the 2 leggeds to develop there work with us, and  a great gift to meet a truly inspirational human. Some local young people were also able to particpate in a training session which they loved.This visit was only made possible by the enormous generosity of volunteers who we just cannot thank enough. You know who you are and you are all amazing and your gift will continue to caring on working for years that’s the value of education. Emma wrote a great blog about the project please see below.


Read Emma Massingale’s blog for Horse & Country TV about her time on Skyros here!


Baby Maya just born my grandaughter

Baby Maya just born – my grandaughter

After nearly three years of not breeding, this year Maya was born on the 30th of May, to Meli and Tarpan. Tarpan’s first foal and a proud father he is and my first grandchild …. Maya is a whirlwind, she was up and running from the word go, with the Houdini spirit of her mother and sisters – within 2 hours of birth she managed to get into my field and was trying to find a drink from us geldings! Luckily being super new men horses, of course we were very polite and told her to wait until the 2-leggeds came to get her out and back to mum. Maya has been hugely popular with all the volunteers and is rather spoilt. If anyone is interested in adopting here please do contact us.

 Maya trying out spring grass...

Maya trying out spring grass…

Baby Maya and her mum Meli and her 2 half sisters Glika and Chloe

Baby Maya and her mum Meli and her 2 half sisters Glika and Chloe


Maya Thank you Irini Anadioti photography

Maya Thank you Irini Anadioti photography

We are hoping that some of our older trained Skyrians will be finding new homes in the not too distant future, thus allowing some of our younger maiden mares and first time stallions to breed, increasing quality and introducing new bloodlines to the breed. But this is always done in a controlled way and with an enormous amount of forethought. So when two older trained ponies leave for new pastures, two mares will get to be covered – we at all times want to balance between conservation and welfare.

Summer news coming soon, watch this space … The festival etc, welfare work, and new developments!

Γιορτή για το Σκυριανό Άλογο

2η Ετήσια Γιορτή για το Σκυριανό Άλογο

Σκύρος, 19 – 21 Ιουνίου 2015


Το Σκυριανό Άλογο: άγρια ​​ομορφιά, ήρεμη συντροφιά..


Ελάτε να ανακαλύψουμε και να γιορτάσουμε μαζί με μία από τις σπανιότερες και αρχαιότερες φυλές αλόγων στον κόσμο. Η δεύτερη γιορτή, που αρχίζει στις 19 Ιουνίου και θα διαρκέσει μέχρι το βράδυ της 21ης, θα λάβει χώρα σε διάφορα σημεία στο όμορφο νησί της Σκύρου, την πατρίδα του παγκοσμίως γνωστού Σκυριανού Αλόγου.

Γεμάτη με εκπλήξεις, εργαστήρια, καλλιτεχνικές εκθέσεις, παραστάσεις και φυσικά την ευκαιρία να γνωρίσετε το Σκυριανό Άλογο. Αυτή η συναρπαστική και μοναδική τριήμερη γιορτή θα σας γεμίσει με πολύτιμες στιγμές που θα θυμόσαστε για πάντα και μια βαθύτερη κατανόηση για αυτή την μοναδική μικρόσωμη φυλή αλόγου.

DSC_5626 (1)amphitriti

Με μόνο περίπου 300 Σκυριανά Άλογα εναπομείναντα στον κόσμο, το Σκυριανό Άλογο είναι μία φυλή με μοναδικό φαινότυπο και ίσως να αποτελεί συνδετικό κρίκο με τις αρχαίες, άγριες φυλές αλόγων του κόσμου. Με καταγωγή την Σκύρο αυτά τα μικρά άλογα έχουν κάτι τόσο ξεχωριστό που αιχμαλωτίζει την καρδιά, το μυαλό και τη φαντασία όλων όσων έχουν την ευκαιρία να βρεθούν κοντά τους. Αν και το ύψος του (από 95 μέχρι 115 εκ.) παραπέμπει σε πόνι, η διάπλαση και η εκπληκτική χάρη της κίνησής του εύστοχα του διασφαλίζουν τον χαρακτηρισμό ως μικρό άλογο. Αυτή η αρχαία, σπάνια ελληνική φυλή είναι γνωστή για την εξυπνάδα και την ιδιαίτερη ιδιοσυγκρασία της.


Αυτό δεν είναι ένα συνηθισμένο φεστιβάλ! Ελάτε να υποστηρίξετε και να μάθετε περισσότερα για αυτό το σπάνιο μικρό άλογο.

Αυτές οι διακοπές θα είναι μία αξέχαστη εμπειρία ζωής κοντά στο Σκυριανό Άλογο, με καταπληκτική φιλοξενία, όμορφο τοπίο, ήλιο, θάλασσα, καλό φαγητό, κρασί, μουσική και παράδοση. Απολαύστε ζωντανά δραστηριότητες με τα Σκυριανά Άλογα από ειδικούς και ανθρώπους που τα φροντίζουν, αναβίωση παραδοσιακών εθίμων, μία ξεχωριστή μέρα στο Βουνό, στο όρος Κόχυλας τον φυσικό βιότοπο του Σκυριανού Αλόγου γεμάτη με εκδηλώσεις, μία έκθεση καλλιτεχνών με θέμα το άλογο, περιπάτους, παραδοσιακό φαγητό και κρασί και πολλά πολλά άλλα!


Νέοι ή μεγαλύτεροι, ειδικοί στα άλογα ή μη, υπάρχουν πολλές συναρπαστικές δραστηριότητες για τον καθένα. Το πλήρες πρόγραμμα θα κυκλοφορήσει τον Μάιο.

“Τα Σκυριανά Άλογα είναι τα πιο ήπια και εγκάρδια άλογα που μπορείτε να φανταστείτε. Αλληλεπιδρώντας μαζί τους μαθαίνουμε τόσα πολλά πράγματα που έχουμε ξεχάσει στο σύγχρονο πολιτισμό, όπως η εμπιστοσύνη, ο σεβασμός για τον εαυτό μας, καθώς και για τα άλλα έμβια όντα αλλά και να ακούμε την καρδιά μας. Αυτά τα άλογα μπορούν να θεραπεύσουν τις ανθρώπινες ψυχές. “

– Emma Mills, πρώην βοηθός στο Κέντρο Προστασίας ιπποειδών Redwings, Μ. Βρετανία.

Το φεστιβάλ διοργανώνεται από το Skyros Island Horse Trust σε συνεργασία με το

Κτήμα Μουριές και με τη συμβολή της Ένωσης Μικρόσωμης Φυλής Αλόγων Σκύρου.

Υποστηρίζεται από το Πρόγραμμα LIFE του Δήμου Σκύρου.

Για περισσότερες πληροφορίες:

Amanda Simpson: skyrosislandhorsetrust@gmail.com
Μανώλης Τραχανάς: mouries.farm.skyros@gmail.com

Χρυσάνθη Ζυγογιάννη: skyroslife@gmail.com

Θανάσης Δαλακλίδης: skyrianhorsesociety@hotmail.com





Get ready for … the Second Annual Skyros Horse Festival!

The Second Annual Skyros Horse Festival
June 19th – 21st 2015, Skyros Island, Greece

Skyros Horse festival 20151560594_614134651974033_1247363666_n

The Skyros Horse: wild beauty… gentle friend…


Come to discover and celebrate with us the Skyrian Horse, one of the rarest and oldest horse breeds in the world. The second festival, commencing on the 19th of June and running until the evening of the 21st, will take place in a variety of beautiful places on the Greek island of Skyros, homeland of this hidden treasure, the little Skyrian Horse.

Packed with surprises, workshops, tradition, art, performances and of course the opportunity to get to know the Skyrian Horse, this inspiring and unique, three-day festival will fill you with treasured moments to take home and a deeper understanding of this unique little horse.

With only approximately 300 Skyrian Horses left in the world, with its distinct phenotype, it may be our closest link to the original wild horse. It has recently been officially recognized as a registered breed. Originating in Skyros, Greece, these little horses have something so special that they capture the hearts, minds and imaginations of all who have the opportunity to meet themAlthough technically a pony, standing between 9.3 and 11.1 hands high, their conformation and surprising grace of movement aptly ensure that they are called a little horse. This ancient, rare Greek breed is renowned for its intelligence, wonderful disposition and temperament.

DSC_5626 (1)


As many people will be aware, Greece is facing very challenging times and the Skyrian horse has to live and thrive within the Greek crisis. Having survived until now, having faced so many turning points at which the breed could have disappeared forever, these little horses have managed to survive… Will Greece’s Crisis be the Skyrian horses’ Achilles Heel? This is a story that is as powerful as any Greek myth. This will be no ordinary festival. Come and show your support and find out more about this rarest of small horses.


Come and have a once in a lifetime holiday, combining the little Skyrian Horse, amazing hospitality, a beautiful landscape of sun and sea, great food and wine, music and tradition. Enjoy live performances with the Skyrian Horses and the people that care for them, watch people reviving traditions with the horses, get involved in  a mountain safari and exciting events in the natural habitat of the Skyrian Horse, an international art exhibition, workshops, walks, and much much more.



Young or old, horsey or non-horsey, there are plenty of exciting events for everyone. The full program will be released in May.

This festival is being organised by Skyros Island Horse Trust  and this year with the partnership and contribution of Mouries Farm and  contributions from the Skyrian Horse Society, the official registration society for the Skyrian Horse.

The festival is being supported and coordinated in partnership with the Skyros LIFE Project for the Biodiversity of the Island which is co-funded by the Skyros Municipality and the European Commission.

For more info contact:

Amanda Simpson: skyrosislandhorsetrust@gmail.com

Manolis Trachanas: mouries.farm.skyros@gmail.com

Chrysanthi Zygogianni: skyroslife@gmail.com

Useful links: