Impact of maintenance systems on the Hucul mares’ reproductive rates
An assessment of the reproductive impacts of maintenance systems, stable-pasture keeping and natural pasture, on Hucul horses was undertaken during the period 1990–2010. During the period covered by the analysis, much higher reproductive results were obtained in natural breeding systems. During the same period (1990–2010), pregnancy levels of 82.2 %, fertility of 80.44 %, sterility of 17.76 % including prolificacy of 77.45 % were attained under guided breeding systems. The corresponding figures for natural breeding were 93.50 %, 90.25 %, 6.50 % and 85.56 %, respectively. On farm, where reproductive guided breeding system was practiced, the best breeding results were obtained by mating mares with stallions from Hroby line while the least were with stallions from Gurgul line. However, in stables where reproduction was devoid of human interference the Hroby and Goral lines were most benefitting. A decline in pregnancy and fecundity accompanied by an increase in sterility were observed on both breeding facilities.