Horse Isle 3: Big Book of Breeds
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Big Book of Breeds
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[ INDEX ] Equine Type: Horse Breed: Moyle   [ PREV ] [ NEXT ]
The Moyle is an American horse breed known for its endurance and frontal bosses.

The foundation dam of the Moyle breed is a filly of a mare bought by a man named Chris Hansen in the second half of the 19th century. The mare belonged to the Mormons in Utah, whose horses were known for their incredible endurance and for having little "horns" on their forehead. Hansen's grandson, named Rex Moyle, bred the filly (now a grown mare) multiple times to establish a small herd of horses to be used on his farm.

At the beginning of the 20th century, Moyle went to Utah, where captured mustangs were auctioned. Among these mustangs were horses that had little horns on their forehead, and a conformation similar to the conformation that the Mormons' herds had. Moyle bought these horses and added them to the herd in his ranch.

Because the herd was still relatively small, Moyle introduced some Cleveland Bay blood, while maintaining the traits and conformation of horses from the original herd. Over the years, the herd grew in size and developed into a distinct breed called the "Moyle."

During the 20th century, Moyle horses became famous for their tremendous endurance, as horses from the Moyle's farm finished in high placements in various endurance races. Nevertheless, the breed never became common, and today the Moyle is an extremely rare breed.

As mentioned above, the Moyle is known for having two bony bumps on its forehead. Although widely known as "horns," these are not real horns, but an anatomical trait called "frontal bosses." This trait is found only in a handful of breeds such as the Chinese Datong (see 'Datong' for more info) and the Spanish Carthusian (see the 'Carthusian' for more information.) It is from the latter that the Moyle probably inherited its frontal bosses. Although not all Moyles have frontal bosses, in Horse Isle all of them possess this unique trait.

The unique conformation of the Moyle is not limited to its frontal bosses. The structure of the forearm, shoulder, and front ribs, as well as the structure of the muscles of the shoulder and girth, give the shoulders of the Moyle an exceptionally large range of movement, which is not seen among other horse breeds. This gives the gaits of the Moyle their natural smoothness.

Another interesting trait is the size of the liver, spleen, and heart of the Moyle, which are larger than normally seen in other breeds, and explain the impressive endurance of the Moyle. Last, many Moyles lack chestnuts on their legs.

Moyles are usually bay in color, but black, brown, chestnut, grey, and in rare cases, buckskin also occur. In Horse Isle, single and double cream-dilutes exist as well, as there are no official breeding restrictions against them. White markings are uncommon in this breed, and are usually restricted to the face, although leg-markings are seen from time to time. That said, in Horse Isle, Moyle horses will be penalized for having excessive white markings.

Moyle horses usually stand around 15hh, but the full height range of this breed is 14hh to 16hh.


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