Member Report from Germany
REPORT AT 2014 WAHO CONFERENCE:
Dr. Michael Kersebaum, Germany: Mr. President, members of the Executive Committee, delegates, ladies and gentlemen. My name is Dr. Michael Kersebaum, I have the honour to be the President of the German Arabian Horse Society, VZAP. In the name of the Board of our organization and of all German breeders, owners and friends of the Arabian horse I would like to express our cordial thanks to our hosts for their warm welcome and ongoing hospitality.
Our society is not only taking care of Purebred Arabian horses, but also of those of other derivative Arabian breeds like Anglo-Arabs, Shagya Arabs and Partbred Arabian horses. Approximately 450 Purebred Arabian stallions are used for breeding and service within our society. The number of registered Purebred Arabian broodmares actively used in breeding is about 1,120. Our foal registration number of Purebred Arabian foals has unfortunately dropped by 12% to 773 foals in 2013. Having a look at all figures, there is a slight decrease in breeding activities being also caused by a lesser number of members. The breeding activities are more selected and are producing higher quality. This higher quality may also be seen in the big number of exported horses which increases steadily. In the period from 2009 up to 2013 there is an increase of 94% in exports, whereas the number of imported horses is nearly steady. In 2014 we exported 350 horses.
Since 2010 all foals are microchipped. The CA-testing is mandatory for all horses used in breeding. With a total number of 2,140 members, the German Arab Horse Society is a very active community. About 7 major shows or events are being organized respectively supported by our organization. The most famous one is the well-known All Nations Cup event taking place every year at the last weekend of September in Aachen, in combination with ridden classes. In 2014 it was already the 32nd All Nations Cup.
The constitution of our organization has been changed in the way that the whole directorate has downsized to 8 persons, the Executive Board consists of 4 persons like before. New committees have been established taking care of different matters like sports and performance, breeding, public relations and youth work and show organization. These committees are staffed professionally with very active members who are working closely together with the VZAP headquarters in order to promote the Arabian horse and to attract as many people as possible.
The recently established racing society FUGARO (First United German Arabian Racehorse Organisation), having both German breeding societies (VZAP and ZSAA) as company members, is recognized in Germany as the solely accepted organization for races with purebred Arabian horses serving as a performance test. While the racing was nearly down to zero, FUGARO organized 8 races last year and 14 races in 2014. This goes together with an increase in the number of horses in training by nearly 150%. These events enjoyed great popularity and benefits on promoting the Arabian Horse to be used successfully in sports as well.
Our society is connected with a central database where several other German breeding societies are also connected, therefore data exchange is given within Germany. Since recently, we do have an online pedigree database for our members only. We are just about to arrange access for the WAHO office. We would appreciate acceptance from WAHO to be used as online studbook volume X by other registries too as this method would be the best up-to-date information service for all of you.
Our homepage offers the possibility to our members to promote their horses for sale as well as giving information on special events and on horses having achieved special successes. Our online database of stallions licensed for breeding within our society allows careful selection of sires. We also use an Arabian Horse Magazine to report on activities within the society and on the Arabian horse in general. We really hope that with all these efforts our society will not only contribute to maintain the wonderful breed of Arabian horses, but better to infect more people to share their lives with them. Thank you for your attention.
REPORT AT 2011 WAHO CONFERENCE:
Mrs. Bettina von Kameke, Germany: Mr. President, members of the Executive Committee, delegates, ladies and gentlemen. My name is Bettina von Kameke and along with Mr. Manfred Hain, the Chairman of the German Arab Horse Society, VZAP, I am a delegate for this Conference. In the name of all German breeders and owners I would first of all like to express our respects towards our hosts, the Qatar Racing and Equestrian Club, under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Abdullah bin Khalifa Al Thani, as well as towards His Highness Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, the Emir of Qatar. We are delighted about your warm hospitality and the spectacular development of this wonderful horse country.
At the moment, we are working on our studbook volume 15, which will be available as a CD and online in the next 6 months. Most of you will be aware of the statistics published in the annual report, which is on your tables, which shows that our import and export traffic has slowed down slightly. Despite continuously registering approximately 1,000 purebred Arabian foals per year, the number of purebred mares and stallions in breeding has steadily decreased over the years, and closed with 1,304 purebred mares and 626 purebred stallions in the year 2010. The stable foal number, alongside the decreasing number of the mares, suggests more intense breeding programmes, having fewer coverings but the same number of foals is a sign for better health quality. Further statistics in the report concern the registration of new purebred broodmares, showing a solid figure of around 250 per year and the number of stallions that pass the licensing where they have to prove their qualities and characters in dressage, showjumping, race and cross-country is coming to an average of 10 stallions a year. Finally, since 2010 all horses are microchipped, and have to be CA tested.
With a total number of 1,220 breeders and almost the same number of passive members, the German Arab Horse Society is a very active community. Around 7 major shows or events are being organized or supported by the German Arab Horse Society every year, next to several sport competitions, halter shows and breeding events by regional associations for Arabian horses. The most famous show which you all know is, of course, the All Nations Cup. The German Society for Arabian Horse Racing, DRAV, organized 20 races and the German Society for Endurance Riding and Endurance Racing, VDD, organized about 220 rides. The VDD has just started to install a database for all competing horses, so in future we will be able to monitor the tremendous participation of Arabian horses in the endurance sport scene. The bronze medal for the German Endurance Team at the last World Equestrian Games in Kentucky is the best example of promotion for the increasing demand of Arabian horses. Generally, it seems to be easier to attract people for riding competitions than for shows at the moment. The number of entries for riding competition at the German National Championships in Aachen is not only growing but almost exploding, because of more and more international participants.
In order to promote the Arabian horse and to attract as many people as possible, the activities are shared between the VZAP headquarters and the regional associations. Whenever there is a horse exhibition in one of the bigger cities, such as Equitana in Essen, or HansePferd in Hamburg, the breeders and riders of that region make an appearance in the form of either a presentation or a booth, to network with other organizations. Additionally, invitations from the regional associations to leisure activities such as trail rides, breeder trips to visit other studs or presentations, are meant to create partnership with Arabian horse lovers and horses. The WAHO Trophy is also an important award for promotion and this year went to Zid Ibn El Zahim, a Western horse born in 1997. The grey stallion, winner of several championships, again and again thrilled the crowd with his spins and turns.
As much as emotions are a good marketing tool, and love is the basis for a good relationship between man and horse, knowledge and know-how are also of the most immense importance. Therefore, we offer lots of clinics in all parts of Germany for breeders and horse-lovers, concerning questions of health as well as training, showing, judging and breeding Arabian horses. On our homepage we let people know about successful horses and give them incentives to join us. In a few weeks a new Arabian horse magazine will start to inform about the activities of the Society, its horses and members, and use the opportunity to create overall enthusiasm for the Arabian horse. Thank you very much for your attention.
STATISTICS FOR 2011:
Foals registered: 871
Horses exported: 253
Horses imported: 55
REPORT MADE AT 2009 WAHO CONFERENCE:
My name is Sylvie Eberhardt, I am the German delegate for this Conference and I am today standing in for the Chairman of the German Arab Horse Society Mr. Wolfgang Eberhardt, and our General Secretary, Mr. Dieter Von Kleist. I also bring you greetings from all the breeders and owners in Germany.
Before I inform you about the statistics of the purebred Arabian horse breeding in Germany, first let me tell you that we have just finished our new German Arabian Stud Book for purebred Arabian horses, this Volume includes the breeding stock of the Main and State Stud farm Marbach, and the horses bred in Luxembourg. It covers the period 1999-2006, including the registered foals until 2008.
At the end of 2008 we had a total number of 2,771 Society members. We registered 1,090 purebred Arabian foals in 2008, with 1,592 breeding mares and 627 breeding stallions. As reasons for the reasons for the decrease of breeding mares and stallions over the last 3 years, we assume not only the age factor but also the market situation. On the other hand, we can take the increase of registered foals in 2008 as a positive development due to the promotion strategy of our Society. In 2008 we registered 100 imported purebred Arabian horses and exported 307. The increase of imports and decrease of exports over the last 3 years reflects healthier breeding policies.
Based on the experiences of our Sub-Commissions, which are organizing plenty of different activities around the purebred Arabian horse, we have to lift up the estimated number of living purebred Arabian horses in Germany in 2008 to about 25,000. DNA is used for parent verification. The use of microchipping is currently optional. We allow 5 foals per mare per year by Embryo Transfer. In the last weekend of September each year, the German Arab Horse Society organizes the famous All Nations Cups Show at Aachen. Since 2006, this has been held together with the German National Championships Show. The awarding of the WAHO Trophy is a very important part of the All Nations Cup. This important event weekend is followed by our Stallion Show, also held at Aachen.
The German Arab Horse Society organizes two riding competitions, one at Strohen and one at Aachen on the occasion of the All Nations Cup. These competitions offer classes for dressage and showjumping and both saw an increase in the number of riders and horses in 2008. In Strohen for example there were 87 horses, and 90 at Aachen. In 2008 we also had 6 ECAHO halter shows of different levels organized by private persons.
For racing, we have the German Society for Arabian Horse Racing, they work in cooperation with our Society but organize and run the racing independently from us. For endurance riding, there is the German Society for Endurance Riding and Racing, this Society controls the organization of endurance rides and administers all the results. There are between 120 and 150 endurance rides in Germany each year. Thanks to the fact that in every region of Germany, Sub-Commissions of our German Arab Horse Society are organizing breeders’ seminars, breeding and riding competitions, endurance riding, western riding, dressage, showjumping, and cross-country events, we have a lot of activities for purebred Arabian horses. The goal of the Board of our German Arab Horse Society is to educate our breeders, and by demonstrating the various possibilities to use the Arabian horse to open new markets for the breed in our country. The tools are the original Sub-Commissions and the activities. For more detailed information, please visit our website, www.vzap.org . This was the report of the German Arab Horse Society. Thank you so much for your attention.
REPORT MADE AT 2007 WAHO CONFERENCE:
In April 2007 we had a new election of our Society’s Board, now Mr. Wolfgang Eberhardt is the Chairman of the German Arab Horse Society, and Mr. Dieter Von Kleist is our General Secretary. The office of the German Arab Horse Society is still located in Hanover. Our Society registers purebred Arabian horses, Shagyas, Anglo-Arabs and Partbred Arabs. Our Society also registers the Arabian horses kept in Marbach main and State Stud Farm, and those in Luxembourg. Therefore these horses are also included in our statistics.
At the end of 2006 we had a total number of 2,983 Society members, divided into 1,559 active members and 1,424 non-active members. In 2006 we registered 1,007 purebred Arabian foals. We had 1,787 purebred mares and 769 purebred stallions were registered for breeding, of those purebred mares 1,647 were covered by purebred Arabian stallions. The main and State Stud Marbach owns 25 purebred mares and 6 purebred stallions and in the year 2006 we registered 10 foals for them. These horses are also included in the total amount as I mentioned before. The foal registrations have dropped by 48% during the past 11 years, comparing to the year 1995 when the maximum number of foals we ever registered in our Society totalled 1,959. Our mares are mostly covered by natural service, but Artificial Insemination via fresh, chilled, or frozen semen, both domestic and imported, is allowed, as well as Embryo transfer. In the year 2006 only two studs were interested in Embryo transfer but no foal was actually born or produced by Embryo transfer.
In the year 2006 we imported only 62 purebred Arabians, mostly from Italy, Austria, Belgium, and the Netherlands. On the other hand we had the extremely high number of 476 exported horses, mainly to Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Kuwait and Belgium. I can tell you that we have already 142 exported purebred Arabian horses for the first 3 months in 2007. At first, this seems to be good but it only reflects the difficult market situation for purebred Arabian horses and also the common financial and economic situation in Germany. The number of living purebred Arabian horses is still estimated at about 15,000. The last hard-covered printed stud book we published was volume number 6/7, which included all mares and stallions up to 1998 and their purebred Arabian foals. We do not consider to produce a printed stud book any more, but we have produced a CDRom in September 2002, which contains all purebred Arabian horses we have ever registered since our Society was founded and we plan an update soon, at the end of 2007.
We still organize our Stallion Show at Aachen each year in October, where any stallions which the owner would like to have entered for breeding are presented for identity verification, re-taking samples for DNA, SCID testing and measurements such as height, depth of birth, and cannon bone circumference. Since the year 2003 we changed the method of parent verification completely from blood-typing to DNA. Since 1998 we have issued passports for all foals and since July 2000 the EU has required us to issue passports for all horses born before 1998. We issue two documents, the passport plus the document of ownership. We also have a computerized database for registered Arabians.
Since 1999 we developed an Elite Broodmare and Stallion scheme, not only to acknowledge and honour Arabian mares and stallions of particular significance but also to provide as much information as possible for the breeders and to help them with their planning and breeding decisions. Further information as well as the Elite Mare and Stallions can be found on the homepage of our website, www.vzap.com
The principal activities for purebred Arabians in Germany are breeding, showing, endurance riding, racing, dressage, showjumping and cross-country as well as western riding and of course just pleasure riding. In the last weekend of September each year the German Arab Horse Society organizes the All Nations Cup Show at Aachen, always in co-operation with the All Nations Cup Committee.
In 2007 Germany registered 1,042 foals, and processed 306 exports and 169 imports.