I support the Skyrian Horse

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Local Society

The natural, social and economic conditions in Skyros were such as to allow the Skyrian horse to survive to our day on the island. The main factor was the structure of the local society. At the end of springtime, when water and forage run short, the horses left Mt. Kohylas where they lived in the winter, and returned to their owners. The Skyrians used the horse in summer threshing and then to plough their land in the autumn. Then they held the annual shows and races and let the horses go free for the winter.


With the onset of mechanized agriculture the Skyrian horse was marginalised, and human population too started to dwindle. Values, ideas and ideals were abandoned. The deification of money in recent years has also affected the Skyrian society. It gradually abandoned the horse, which was not "worth" the time and cost involved. Fortunately, some special individuals continued to love the Skyrian horse, to protect it, and to safeguard it as part of their cultural heritage.


Recently, a hopeful and encouraging sign of the new trends has been the negative reaction of the local people to the plans for an over-sized wind park in the area that is the natural habitat of the Skyrian horse. Also important is the effort –intensifying in recent years- to reconnect the Skyrian children with the Skyrian horse. Private initiatives, such as the "Katsarelias-Simpson" conservation,education and welfare project in Skyros and the Sylvia Steen riding therapy courses in Corfu, are also playing a positive role in securing a good future for the Skyrian horse.