The Yellow Hornet, Bashkir Curly Stallion
The Yellow Hornet was born on January 29, 1989 in Sequim, Washington. Full of Curls and Color! Joe Mead raised Hornet. I owned Hornet for five years. He is a very colorful horse with a buckskin body, a white blanket with buckskin spots, black dorsal strip, and a black mane and tail. He has solid Damele foundation curly breeding on the sire's side following down to his own sire Yellow Jacket. On the dam's side, he has bloodlines to the native curlies at Aishihik Lake in the Yukon. This bloodline carries the running walk or Indian shuffle. It is faster than a walk, slower than an extended trot and extremely easy to ride. Hornet does the running walk. His head doesn't bob and his back stays smooth and he covers ground quickly. The Yellow Hornet is an outstanding stallion. He is protective of his mares - he will chase coyotes out of the pasture. When we wean our foals, that is when we take Hornet away from the mares. We halter him and lead him down the road a mile to his fall/winter pasture by our home. Once haltered, rarely will he "talk" to the mares as we lead him home. He has sired many superb curly foals. ~written by Jeanne Krejci, Vergas MN~
Researching the Appaloosa bloodines in our Curlies
Yellow Hornet's ancestors date back to a stallion by the name of "Chief of Fourmile"
Here is a history about Chief of Fourmile
As quoted from an article in "The Country Today" in January of 1998, I write: "Chief of Fourmile was a consistent winner of national championships in the late 1950's and 1960's. He died when he was 28 years old, in 1980." The Appaloosa Horse Club Inc., based in Moscow, Idaho, maintains the breed registry. According to the club, all the foundation horses have long since died. Only 4,932 horses were registered as foundation animals." As stated in the article, two characteristics of these early Appaloosas were noted. (1) The gentleness of the breed, siting examples of another direct colt out of Chief of Fourmile, which was Fourmile Stormy, who was handled by an 8-year-old child. (2)"The Indian shuffle gait which was treasured in the early years of the Appaloosa or spotted horse when riders had to cover many miles...it's faster than a walk, slower than an extended trot and extremely easy to ride."
Going farther back in history to when the Nez Perce Indians found these first spotted horses, an article in the Horse Illustrated Breed Profile on "The Appaloosa, a spotted Tale," states: "The Nez Perce took a liking to their markings and began to selectively breed for them, as well as for endurance, hard feet and other characteristics that have since become synonymous with the Appaloosa horse...the Appaloosa conformation was distinctive among other breeds. It had a somewhat compact body with a medium-set neck, a deep chest, long sloping pasterns, muscular thighs..."
This describes the Foundation Appaloosa, not most of the Appaloosas we see today. "Up until the early 70's, the Appaloosa had become the third most popular breed in the United States. In the late 70's, due to excessive outcrossing, in particular to Quarter Horses, today's Appaloosa resembles more closely now to that of the Quarter Horse and many are solid in color compared to the original Appaloosa that carried the markings, striped hooves, spotted muzzle and white sclera. Larry Edwards, president of the Appaloosa Horse Club says 'It seems like for the past 12 years , we've been trying to convince the world that the appaloosa is a solid-colored horse...this has really hurt the breed's identity. We used to be number three in popularity, and now we are number seven.' " There are many people who are not aware of the early characteristics of the Foundation Appaloosas and find "Today's Appaloosa" to be high-spirited and in some cases I have heard them referred to as "Crazy Appys". Much has been compromised, and the "ApHC is trying to undue the damage, but there 'are purists on the fringes who believe this move is too little too late' and think that ' the Appaloosa horse is on the brink of extinction.' "..."one of these is Dave Higgins, president of the International Colored Appaloosa Association, a nonprofit association and breed registry that was formed in 1991. 'Our goal, simply, is to save the Appaloosa horse,' he says. According to Higgins, the bloodline of the Appaloosa horse have become so diluted that only drastic measures can save it. While these traditionalists have their detractors-among them those who see nothing wrong with diluting Appaloosa blood with that of quality horses of other breeds-they seem determined to fight onward. Higgins says, 'If we stop the outcrossing and start concentrating on breeding programs that breed Appaloosa to Appaloosa, we might stand a chance.' " "Those who created the breed's first registry and those who loved this horse recognized their awesome responsibility to Chief Joseph to safeguard the Appaloosa: to preserve the traits of the horses the great chief had once called "my children."
It is no wonder that Joe Mead saw fit to include the old foundation appy lines into his curly herd. It not only strengthened their smooth movement, but brains, agility and color as a bonus!
Back to the Curly History Page
Other Interesting Links:
The Yellow Hornet
Ruby Red King
Photos of the Foundation Curly Horses
More Interesting History about specific lines, including Gaited Curlies
ICHO - More interesting History Links