Welcome to horseback.co.nz . Please feel free to browse our site. The horse (Equus caballus) is a hoofed (ungulate) mammal, one of eight living species of the family Equidae. The horse has evolved over the past 45 to 55 million years from a small multi-toed creature into the large, single-toed animal of today. North America was the original home of the horse species. They evolved here, and thrived here for over 57 million years. The plant and animal communities of North American ecology evolved with horses playing an integral role. About 8,000 - 10,000 years ago they are believed to have become extinct in the land of their origin, although luckily by that time they had migrated to Asia, where they spread into Europe and North Africa.
Humans began to train horses around 4500 BC, and their domestication is believed to have been widespread by 3000 BC; by 2000 BC the use of domesticated horses had spread throughout the Eurasian continent. Although most horses today are domesticated, there are still endangered populations of the Przewalski’s Horse, the only remaining true wild horse, as well as more common feral horses which live in the wild but are descended from domesticated ancestors.
Horses were historically used in warfare. Horses and humans interact in many ways, not only in a wide variety of sport competitions and non-competitive recreational pursuits, but also in working activities including police work, agriculture, entertainment, assisted learning and therapy.
It could be expected that, in a colony settled by predominantly British people, horse racing in some form or other would soon begin. Horses were a valuable necessity in the colonies. They were from New South Wales, the gift of Governor Macquarie to the Maoris. Horses from New South Wales were to have an important place in the establishment of thoroughbred breeding in New Zealand.