21 OCT 2021
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Welfare of Mourne horses must come first, says National Trust

13 October 2021

Horses grazing in the Mourne Mountains may make for an idyllic picture, but the reality of the situation is grim, warns conservation charity the National Trust.

The National Trust, which looks after 1,400acre of land in the Mournes, is working in partnership with animal rescue groups Equine Halfway House and Crosskennan Lane Animal Sanctuary to manage the safe removal of sick and abandoned horses from its land in the Mourne mountains. 

Horses are not a new feature on the mountain but their presence on land managed by the National Trust has increased significantly over recent years, particularly since the wildfire in April reduced their grazing area, forcing them higher up Slieve Donard and Commedagh mountains. 

“We’ve noticed an increase in the number of horses on our land in the last three years in particular,” explains Marc Vinas, Area Ranger for the National Trust.

Since the fire in April, these animals have been seeking out fresh grazing around Millstone Mountain, Glen River Valley and Thomas’s Quarry and can be found in even greater numbers.



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