Name of breed: Boerperd
Country of origin: South Africa
Breed origin: A modern breed indigenous to South Africa, the Boerperd is said to have originated from the Cape Horse of South Africa or the ancient Boer horse. The origins of the Cape Horse trace back to the horses imported from Java to southern Africa in the mid 1600s. During the Boer Wars between 1880 and 1902, many old-type Boer horses were killed – some died in the fighting, while others were shot on Boer farms. At the end of the wars, the breed’s numbers were greatly reduced and so the conservation efforts began.
A breeder’s association, the Kaapse Boerperd Breeders’ Society of South Africa was formed in 1948, while a separate association, the Boerperd Society of South Africa, formed in 1973. The latter has since been named the South Africa Boerperd in 1998.
Distinguishing features: Found in a cold climate, the Boer horse is extremely robust, alert and trustworthy. The breed also displays characteristics of Flemish, Hackney and Cleveland Bay breeds that were imported to the area. Their legs are strong and muscular with hard hooves, and are known to be quite sound.
Modern day Boerperd: Even with conservation efforts, today the Boerperd is rare and found in isolated herds in Transvaal, Natal, Eastern Free State and the Cape Province.
Reference: The Equinest