This extinct species is the most likely ancestor of all modern horses. Commonly named Tarpan is a primitive European wild horse that once ranged from southern Spain and France eastward to central Russia.
Their prehistoric stone age paintings suggest they have lived in Europe for a long time. After the ice ages, with an increase in the human population, their herds gradually dwindled and became less abundant.
At the end of 1879, the last wild Tarpan was killed in Ukraine in an attempt to catch and domesticate. Extensive hunting for the flesh, conflict with farmers, destruction of natural (forests; steppe) habitats, and hybridization are the main reasons for extinction.
Did you know?
- When the Tarpan was first studied scientifically by the 18th century, there were probably very few pure bloodline Tarpans, as most had mated with domestic stock.
- Evidence shows wild horses lived in a continuous range from western Europe to Alaska (i.e., continental Europe and the Eurasian steppe), except for parts of Iceland, Scandinavia, and Ireland.
- It is believed that they used to look very much like the Przewalskii, except for a grayer coat.
- The last true Tarpan died in captivity at Munich Zoo in 1887.
- After extinction, efforts were made to recreate the breed. The modern Tarpan is a genetic recreation of the original wild breed that bears a close physical resemblance to its ancient ancestor. Still, it is not as sturdy and robust as pure blood (original).
- Wild horses farmer conflict- farmers did not want the wild Tarpans eating their crops or stealing their tame mares, so they hunted herds of Tarpans.
- The farmers in Eastern Europe treated the Tarpan the same way as mustangs, and wild burros were treated in the United States in the 21st century.
Anything we've missed?
Help us improve this page by suggesting edits. Glory never dies!Suggest an edit
Get to know me
Terrestrial / Aquatic
Altricial / Precocial
Polygamous / Monogamous
Dimorphic (size) / Monomorphic
Active: Diurnal / Nocturnal
Social behavior: Solitary / Pack / Herd
Diet: Carnivore / Herbivore / Omnivore / Piscivorous / Insectivore
Migratory: Yes / No
Domesticated: Yes / No
Dangerous: Yes / No