The rebirth of the valiant little horse of Mérens

The year 2023 marked the 90th anniversary of the national days of the Mérens horse breed.
Every year the industry, amateurs and enthusiasts meet in Bouan, on the Nationale 20, right next to Sinsat.
And of the impassioned it will have taken some to make reappear this race which was close to extinction.

Originating from the high valley of Ariège in the Pyrenees, the Mérens horse has the same look as the Magdalenian horses, represented in the cave of Niaux.

The great majority of the breeders of Mérens are located in Ariège, true cradle of the race. Even if its breeding has spread in France, but also abroad as in the Netherlands or Italy.
It is a small rustic horse which likes itself in freedom which one can cross in the Col du Puymorens.
The village of Mérens, at the foot of the pass is its territory of origin.

It is in the mountains that it draws its qualities praised by connoisseurs: first of all, its rusticity, since it can withstand a wide variety of climates, and secondly, its agility, since it is accustomed to riding on rough mountain terrain.

The Mérens horse almost disappeared, victim of the mechanization of agriculture. 

It is thanks to a handful of breed lovers that today the Mérens horse lends itself to outdoor riding, hiking, show jumping, harnessing or agricultural work.
When he is engaged in competitions, he often does very well.


In 2017 Mérens Horses saw the opening of two new studbooks (genealogical registers) in Europe, Germany and the Czech Republic, adding to those already existing in Italy, Belgium, Holland and Switzerland. Mérens stallions were exhibited at a number of shows, including Cheval Passion in Avignon, Fiera Cavalli in Verona, Equita Lyon and the Salon de l'Agriculture. Several of them qualified for the French Championships at Lamotte-Beuvron, others were part of the French TREC team, and several Mérens stallions qualified for the elite leisure finals at Equita Lyon.


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Le Merens cheval d'estive

Sauvé d'une extinction annoncée de la race par des éleveurs passionnés dans les années 1970, le mérens connaît aujourd'hui un essor spectaculaire. Le petit cheval des Pyrénées ariégeoises règne en prince noir sur les estives, en animal libre égayant les grands espaces d'altitude.
Rustique et polyvalent, il est devenu un cheval de loisir apprécié bien au-delà de l'Ariège, berceau de la race Mérens.
Mérens (Cheval): Mule des Pyrénées, Robe du cheval, Morphologie du cheval, Transhumance, Races chevalines de France, Mérens-les-Vals

Le Mérens : Prince noir d'Ariège

Née d'un croisement du mythe et de la réalité, l'image d'un cheval libre et noir hante aujourd'hui les hauts espaces pyrénéens. Randonneurs, touristes, amateurs de montagne, ceux qui l'ont rencontré l'été sous les cimes, en mouvants troupeaux gardés par un étalon, pensent à des hordes de chevaux sauvages. Le Mérens est pourtant le compagnon de toujours du villageois ariégeois.

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