The Kiger mustangs are a consolidation of the best
Spanish featured mustangs found in the Oregon area by the BLM back in the seventies. The breed was built around a large group found in the Beaty's Butte area.
For many, the history of the Kiger mustang is very romantic! It will take you back to 1977 when the famous Beatty Butte 27 were first discovered, all exhibiting the dun factor coloring and markings. Their preservation can be credited to three BLM employees that recognized their uniqueness and Spanish traits, E. "Ron" Harding, BLM Wild Horse Specialist, Willard "Bill" Phillips, BLM Area Mgr, and Chris Vosler, BLM District Mgr. Ron, Bill and Chris worked to set up the original HMA's, where the Kigers would be placed, and became known as Kiger and Riddle. They implemented a plan to manage, protect, and preserve these horses.
Only mustangs from those two areas are Kiger mustangs. This amazing discovery is what eventually led to the making of the Kiger mustang breed! Fully documented information about the history of this magnificent breed can be found on the Kiger Horse Association & Registry webstie.
Mesteño is one of the original horses captured in the Beatys Butte roundup. His appearance and excellent conformation got him selected as one of the horses to go to the new Kiger HMAs.
He went on to be one of the herd sires, serving as a wild foundation stallion for a good amount of the Kiger Mustangs you see today.
Mesteño was last seen in 1996, no longer able to keep a band of mares for himself; he would have been in or near his 30's.
Fortunately for us, we see a great deal of his strong characteristics passed down through the generations. Mesteño lives on in virtually all Kiger Mustangs.
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International Alliance of Kiger Mustang Breeders
OVERALL IMPRESSION: The Kiger Horse is “baroque” in nature due to its round body contours with the neck arising from the top of the shoulder giving them an elegant, collected stance. The Kiger Horse should be balanced in proportions and should move with ease and without wasted energy. The Kiger Horse, on one hand, should give an impression of strength without being bulky while on the other should not be so refined as to convey frailty or extreme refinement.
HEIGHT: 13.2 to 16 Hands (Preferred is 14 to 15.2). It has been observed that Kiger Horses bred in captivity attain a higher height than those Kiger Horses from the wild range. (this may be nutritional)
QUALITY: The Kiger Horse should have clean, dense bone with sufficient substance, well developed joints and tendons, with a fine body coat, tractable temperament but with good spirit.
COLOR: Variations of the Dun factor color: Dun, Red Dun, Grulla, Claybank, Bay & Black.
MARKINGS: A dorsal stripe is mandatory on all Dun, Red Dun, Grulla and Claybank colors and desirable on all Bays & Blacks. Dorsal stripes may be difficult to see or photograph on some Bay and Black body colored horses. Herringbone stripes radiating from the dorsal are highly desirable. Leg barring should be present and expression can range from dark lacing to strong bars. Additional highly desirable dun factor markings include: wither stripes, shadows and bars on neck and chest, barring on the back of the ear, dark marks around the rim of the eye, dark line along the margin of the ear with dark tips, cobwebbing and/or sooty or shadow mask on the face. Mane and tail should be full with moderate bi-coloring preferred. All colors including Bay and Black must have lighter colored hair inside the ear.
HEAD: Medium in size, clean cut and tapering slightly from jaw to muzzle. Head should be balanced and not overly refined. The profile side view can be straight, slightly sub-concave, or slightly sub-convex. Wide, clean cut lower jaw, medium fine muzzle with small and firm lips and medium nostrils. Ears should be medium in length, hooked at the tips on the inside and set wide apart and carried alert.
NECK: Medium length, arched, clean at the throatlatch, joined smoothly at the shoulder and deep at the point of the shoulder.
FOREHAND: Long shoulder at 45-50 degree slope, blending smoothly with withers. The withers are slightly higher than the point of the hip; well defined but not prominent. Forelegs should be moderately spaced with an inverted V appearance, however, without giving appearance of bulky chest muscling. Muscles in the shoulder and forearm should be long and lean. The legs should be correct; viewed from the side, legs should be wide and lean.
BARREL: The body conformation of the Kiger Horse is distinctive, with a deep chest, short back, broad and moderately muscled. The barrel is oval, with well-sprung ribs, and a full flank. The sternum should not protrude.
HINDQUARTER: The hind legs should be squarely set and so placed that the Kiger Horse turns on his hindquarters with ease. The hips should be lightly rounded, with croup sloped gently with medium-low set tail. Muscles in the hip and thigh should be long and lean. The hocks should be wide, deep and clean. Viewed from the rear, the hind legs are usually closer at the hocks than the fetlocks, but not to the extreme.
CANNON: Short to medium, wide and flat with tendons standing well out from the bone and well defined.
PASTERN: Pasterns should be clean and strong, of medium length, the slope to correlate with the slope of the shoulder. Fetlock joint should not be round, but rather wide. Fetlocks should be scarce of feathering.
HOOVES: The hoof is dense with thick walls and recessed sole and frog. The Kiger Horse hoof tends to be round to oblong, be of medium size, and have more heel and steeper hoof angles. The Kiger Horse should have dark hooves.
ACTION: Light, lively, tending toward higher than average leg action.