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a permanent and trustworthy sup- at Coongul that horse-breeding is ply of good animals.
not necessarily a matter of serious Many sires, chiefly thorough- outlay, as the stock were reared breds, Norfolk trotters, and Arabi- and cared for at an expense of ans, have of late years been im- seven or eight rupees per month ; ported and distributed in various so that, at five years old, the redistricts; but the great difficulty mount only had cost the very that arises is, that very few of the moderate sum of Rs. 480. zemindars can afford to keep the The most important source of young stock for four or five years, horse-supply for the present army when they would become available of India is Australia ; and there for Government use; and those be no doubt that, taking that are kept suffer in their devel- them all round, the Australians, opment and action from insuffi- or Walers, are now the best horses cient food and injudicious treat- in India. The peculiar advanment. There is some diversity of tage of the race is, that animals opinion also with regard to the of all classes and sizes are equally young stock itself, particularly the produced, from the heavy powerissue of the Norfolk horses, whose ful horse suitable for an artillery produce, as the sires are of mixed wheeler, to the small well-bred blood, will more than probably be animal of 14 hands 2 inches to of uncertain quality—some good 15 hands for the sowar of native and some bad.
cavalry. We are not concerned Horse-breeding has been carried at present with the magnificent on in the Mysore state with satis- Waler thoroughbreds, sprung from factory results as far as producing parents of the best blood in the horses fit to carry native cavalry is English stud-book, which compete concerned ; but the farm at Coon- on Indian race-courses, and which gul, where the experiment was car- take such a high position for obried out, had not sufficient space jects of sport aud luxury, though to make it entirely successful, it is obvious how far the demand nor were the original mares large for these, both in Australia and enough to hope for any very high India, must influence for good the results. Here, as elsewhere, horse- quality of the general supply. breeding has suffered from the
The importation of horses from constant changes of supervision Australia into India only dates which are inevitable to Anglo-In- back about thirty years, or perhaps dian life. Horse-breeding is, or a little more, and the present and ought to be, the work of a man's still increasing excellence of the life; and no institution for the shiploads which are annually dispurpose can hope for more than embarked at Calcutta and Madras a moderate success when the is a matter of very recent memory. vicissitudes of service remove a When the trade was in its infancy, superintendent in the middle of though no doubt good horses were his work, before he can see more to be found among those shipped, than one generation of produce the Walers, as a rule, bore rather
to maturity, and before a bad character. Their principal he has gained sufficient experience defects were coarseness and wildto be able to take advantage of ness; and it may easily be imagined one strain of blood rather than how unfavourably these raggedanother. In one particular, how- looking, long-legged animals, with ever, the useful lesson was taught curiously exaggerated powers of bucking and otherwise discompos- and New Zealand, but by far the ing their riders, compared with largest proportion of those that the handsome, compact, and docile find their way to India are shipped Eastern type to which Anglo-In- at Melbourne, and therefore predian soldiers and civilians had pre- sumably are bred in southern Auviously been accustomed.
stralia. The supply of western The reasons for the bad qualities Australia has been very little of the first shipments are not far drawn upon; and this, prima facie, to seek, however. The speculation would appear to be a reversal of was still a doubtful one, and the the proper order of things—as, the dealers did not make a large outlay west Australian ports being nearin gathering and conveying their er to India, the transport voyage stock. It is probable that, on an would be shorter, and as the climaverage, not more than £r apiece ate of the colony more nearly rewas given for the mobs of horses, sembles that of India, it might which were driven down to the be supposed that the stock bred coast like wild animals, without there would require less acclimaany previous tending or handling. tisation before being constitutionThe rough usage on the journey ally serviceable in their new home and on embarkation, which was across the seas. As a matter of their only experience of man, dwelt fact, also, there have been more painfully in their memory, produc- pure Arabian sires in western ing every form of what men call Australia than in any of the other vice; and the long sea-passage in colonies in the great island; and sailing-ships reduced for a consider- their descendants may therefore able time, and sometimes irretriev. pretend to peculiar qualities of ably, their stamina and condition. endurance and soundness, and in All this has now been altered. As this respect have the advantage, the trade developed, better horses for military purposes, over animals have been sent, and more attention whose immediate progenitors were has been paid to breaking and of English blood. handling them before shipment. There are many shippers who Of late years, in order to supply are engaged in the horse trade the trade, a class of middlemen between Australia and India, some has sprung up in Australia who of whom take their stock to Calare graziers only, but not breeders. cutta, and others to Madras. These men have large runs in good Among the former, the best-known grass-countries like Gipp's Land. names are Weekes, Baldock, WarThey purchase the young stock ren, Vanrenen, Cavanagh, and from breeders, keep them for some Hunter ; and among the latter time on their good grass - lands, are Kcrouse, Madden, Learmonth, handle them, and then sell them Gidney, and others. The necessary to shippers for the Indian market. supplies for the Government of
The breeding of horses is carried India form a very large portion of on to a greater or less extent in all their business ; but some of them our Australian colonies,' Tasmania, specially provide a great many
1 In New South Wales alone, the returns for the close of 1885 give the number of horses as 344,697, being an increase of 7000 or 8000 on the previous year. In that year 787 horses were said to have been sent to Sydney, and 636 horses to Melbourne, to be shipped to foreign countries; but these numbers are probably below the mark.
horses for the private market, and there has increased in late years; thoroughbreds for racing and other so that, taking into consideration purposes. The sea - transport is the expenses of collecting horses, very effectively done, as might be conveying them to the coast, shipsupposed from the long experience ment, and the inevitable casual. that has been gained in the many ties and losses on the voyage, it is years during which it has been probable that, unless they can be practised. Formerly sailing-ves- purchased in the first instance at sels were employed, and if these from £15 to £20 all around, it met with contrary winds and rough must be impossible to inake weather, much loss was the result, reasonable profit on the speculafrom the long additional time tion. The limit of price now paid spent on shipboard, and from the in India on account of Governsevere knocking about in the In- ment for any horse purchased is dian Ocean. Steamships are now £50 sterling, though of course the more used, and the extra expense purchasers do not give this full invelved is more than compensated sum for all horses. The limit by the rapidity and safety of the some years ago was Rs. 575, which vovage. The ships are fitted up was reduced to Rs. 550, and has for horses by taking out the in- again been raised to £50, partly ternal fittings, and putting up to meet the constantly depreciatstalls on the upper as well as the ing value of the rupee, and partly main and lower decks.
In some as a sulistantial improvement on ships the hold is used for sick the protit cffered to the shippers. hones, sawdust being laid down to It is a moot question whether the form a bed. In tine weither it is price has not been prematurely ingeneral's possible to take certain cressed by the Indian Government, hend out of their stalls and whow and whether certain minor conthem to lie down, which oherwise cessions to the shippers, which ther are urable to do. The princi- weud bare coat little, might not pulan given is bran aard what is baie ersand an equally good supCai chi bavi hich is quis eat rit wheat advancing the value bra michire with the same te a sm from which it will gan titter. Verr ist hand be made in the future to als made ? la razie ཟླ་༔ ༔ ཀ a་ ་ : ::: ༣ 、 རཱཙཔ། Like Sore imported from
papewmax fer caparatively are * mi ? de evral tanto the ranks of i te varr. Practically
Streaply of small namas it is very little .. r:0;ljads are
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herwise be sicer the light
To carry Dua, or to
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horse or field artillery, it would be or country-bred, and will equally
, hard, even in Europe, to find ani- well withstand the influences of mals more suitable ; and, to a sol- heat or cold. dier's eye, nothing can be finer In many ways, in fact, the than the appearance of he bat. Waler is to the Asiatic horse what teries and the cavalry regiments the European is to the Asiatic man. which are to be found in all our After he has been accustomed to great military centres in the East. the conditions of life in the counBut, with his magnificent appear- try, and so long as he is well fed ance and many good qualities, the and well cared for, he is superior Waler has his weak points, which in power, energy, and endurance ; must be carefully considered and but, immature, unacclimatised, or provided for if we would keep cut off from the supplies which him at his best and reap the full are necessary to his different conadvantage of his service. First stitution, he very rapidly loses and most important, it is to be his superiority, and falls into weakremembered that in India he is an ness and ill health. exotic, and that, before his powers In order to give to the Walers, can be drawn upon for hard work, after they have been purchased at he should go through a slow and Calcutta or Madras, the advancareful process of acclimatisation. tages of the acclimatisation It may safely be said that the which so much stress is laid, most constitution of no Waler troop- of them are transferred to rehorse has adapted itself to Indian mount depots, where they have conditions of service in a less also an opportunity of recovering period than one year; and in many, from the debility caused by the nay, most cases, two years are long sea-voyage, and also from more likely to be the time neces- the injuries which very many of sary. During this period he is thern have received while on board peculiarly susceptible to liver de- ship and in the process of landing. rangement and tropical fever, dis- The Government arrangements orders of the digestive organs, and differ somewhat at the two great to inflammation caused by the ports of debarkation. At Calcutta, coarse fodder used in India. The some horses (those required for Waler, in comparison with other the troops in lower Bengal) are races, is always, and especially kept at the depot there for a short during this time of acclimatisation, time, and are thence sent direct marked by a lack of stamina in to their destination, while the reresisting and throwing off disease, mainder are sent to the depot at and he has not the constitutional Saharunpore, north of Meerut. courage which so especially dis- The depot at Calcutta has very limtinguishes the Arab. He must at ited available space, and is really all times, also, be well and regularly only a series of stables, which fed, and he will fall away rapidly receive all the horses as they are in strength and condition if he is landed, and where they can be reduced to the coarse and scanty kept until they are disposed of. supplies on which the Asiatic The real depot for the Bengal horse will thrive comparatively army is Saharunpore, where the well.
When his period of pro- supplies for the batteries and corps bation is over, however, he is, as in the North-west are kept for some far as the effects of climate are time, until they are distributed concerned, as hardy as the Arab according to requirements.
The arrangements for the horses the value of each troop-horse bepurchased at Madras are framed fore he finally joins the service; on what is, in many details, a pre- and it has been more than once ferable system.
There the ship- proposed that the depot system loads are landed between August should be done away with, and and the following February or that all horses should be directly March, and are from there at once forwarded to their future corps sent to the remount depot at from the port where they have Husur, where they are kept as a been purchased. But this is a most general rule until the succeeding mistaken view, and it is devoutly September, when they are issued to be hoped that such false saving to corps.
Whilst they are at may never be practised. The time Husur they not only have the ad- passed at the remount depot, and vantage of quiet and the most the care which is there given to careful feeding and supervision, the young horses, is practically a but-a feature peculiar to the piece of the greatest economy on place-they are handled, backed, the part of Government. Not and partially trained.
only is the constant supervision of The horses which go to the troops the newly landed horses, and the in lower Bengal are thus the only partial training before joining the Australian remounts arriving in service, of the highest value to each India which do not have the ad- of them, but it saves the lives of vantage of a time at a depot for many which would otherwise sucrest and acclimatisation before cumb to the hard life, exposure, they join their corps; and every and in many cases reckless treatofficer who has there received these ment, without reference to their horses almost straight from the condition, which they would reship, will agree in allowing what ceive if sent direct to the service. an unfortunate arrangement it is Horses after a long voyage are, both for the animals and the ser- even if they have remained in fair vice, and how great is the eventual condition, in an extremely low loss to Government.
state of vitality, and if exposed to It may here be mentioned that weather, or injudiciously fed the whole remount department worked, would soon fall away, and of India consists of a director of probably die. It is to be rememremounts under the Government bered also, that the state of nerof India, a superintendent of de- vousness of all fresh Walers, from pot at Saharunpore, who has also the entirely new sights and assoan assistant, a superintendent of ciations which they encounter, depot at Husur, and a remount requires much more careful treatagent at Calcutta.
Veterinary ment than they would be likely to surgeons are also attached to the gel, or indeed it would be possible depots, and in no employment to give them, in the lines or stables are their professional skill and the of a service corps. best resources of science more use- Let us follow a batch of young ful or more required. Of course Australians which the superinthe maintenance of this depart- tendent of the Husur depot, who ment, with the various depots and has come to Madras for the puroffices, with their subordinate pose, has just purchased from the officials and attendants, involves shipper, after the most rigidly care a considerable outlay of public ful selection, and which are money, and adds very sensibly to route to Husur. A journey.