06. April 2017

Uruguay | Maldonado | Estancia „Las Marquesas“ | Blood farms for hormone production

[Translate to English:] Hochträchtige Stuten, die zur Nachzucht von Blutstuten bestimmt sind.

[Translate to English:] Eine ausgemergelte Stute mit hervortretenden Hüftknochen.

[Translate to English:] Die hintere Stute ist mit einer Halsmarke gekennzeichnet und die vordere mit einem Brandzeichen.

Today we return to the estancia “Las Marquesas” of Fernando Perdigón to conduct further observations on the pastures. Our first sight are three heavily pregnant mares crossing the road. They have yellow tags around their necks. We assume that these mares are used for breeding to ensure a supply of young mares for PMSG production.

Most horses we see near the blood farm are grazing in small herds of five to ten animals. We encounter an emaciated grey mare whose pelvis is prominent. This mare is clearly suffering from neglect. We notice that several horses bear scars.

Some of the horses are marked with a yellow tag around their necks, while others have three-digit numbers hot-branded on their left hindquarters. We detect a pregnant mare with possible bruising to the neck, which could result from the blood collection, as this is the spot where blood is taken from the jugular vein.

During today’s observation of the pastures surrounding the blood farm, we encounter both mares and stallions. The majority of the mares look pregnant. We observe approximately 100 horses in total, but there are most likely many more horses inside the forest plantations, hidden from our view, and on other pastures located further away from the farm. In October 2016, we inspected such remote forest pastures and found numerous horse skulls and bones.