General assembly of members of the Association of Lipizzaner Breeders of Slovenia
A sunny Saturday, March 4, attracted a large number of members to Lipica, the cradle of the Lipizzaner, to the general assembly of members of the Lipizzaner Breeders’ Association. The general assembly was opened by the president of the Association of Lipizzaner Breeders of Slovenia, Aleksander Ozmec, and the director of the stud farm, Tatjana Vošinek Pucer, who also welcomed those present.
The president presented a series of events organized by the association. A lot of work was devoted to education and promotion. The main topics were getting to know the specifics of Lipizzaner breeding, working with young horses, the importance of testing working ability, evaluating and grades of horses. Apart from that, we participated in a series of events where we presented white pearls from Slovenia at events at Kobilarna Lipica. We tried to present them as well as possible, promote their advantages and learn more about them. Only in this way will we be able to feel beautiful and proud around them and with them, and be happy to boast that we are owners or lovers of Lipizzaners.
This was followed by a report on completed professional tasks, i.e. on the fundamental mission of ZRLS. The report was prepared and presented by Klemen Turk, dr. vet. med., who is the manager of the breeding program. The number of admissions and foals is relatively constant (36 foals in 2022), but the quality of breeding is improving. He emphasized that in the last 10 years, there have never been so many mares of such quality evaluated for admission to the pedigree, as the average score of the 13 accepted mares is as much as 70.5 points. This shows a good job both in selection and care of the breeders for the animals and their presentation.
President Aleksander Ozmec presented the tentative work program for this year. We started with the training of members and breeders at the ZRLS Traditional Spring Training, which consisted of three parts: Špela Petročnik lectured on the reproduction of mares and care of foals, on the welfare of horses and the new regulations by Petra Kramarič. PhD and about the nutrition of mares, foals and young horses by Stane Knez, PhD.
This will be followed by a performance as part of Lipizzaner Day on May 20, and the highlight of the year will be a breeding show and horse evaluation in September, as well as a test of the horses’ working ability. At the beginning of October, we will organize an excursion for members to completion of the work ability test at the horse breeding center in Stadl Paura, and of course we will also attend the LIF international assembly.
This was followed by a presentation of the changes to the breeding program, which will now be harmonized with the European regulation on agriculture, and will enable even more accurate evaluation and verification of horses and their abilities, so that we can achieve better results with Lipizzaner.
Janez Rus from Studfarm Lipica briefly presented the entry of the tradition of Lipizzaner breeding on the UNESCO list of intangible heritage and an important share of Slovenia, which was the main activity in this entry, and the Association of Lipizzaner Breeders of Slovenia is registered as the bearer of the tradition in Slovenia in addition to Studfarm Lipica.
At the end of the official work, the president also awarded breeding awards for successful breeding and the best rated foals, mares, stallions and achievements in the work ability test. Awards are given to foals who were judged with 37 or more points, mares over 72 points and stallions over 75 points. Awards are also given to horses that score 7.5 or higher on the performance test. Milojko Strajnar received a special award from ZRLS for his long-term work in ZRLS and quality husbandry.