Skip to content

Endangered breeds on Peak Hill

  • by JW

,,, slowly increasing Dartmoor Pony numbers


The RBST wants us to help “monitor, save and promote our UK native livestock breeds”:

Rare Breeds Survival Trust

Earlier in the year, they published their latest watchlist:

NEW 2022 Watchlist for Rarest UK Breeds | Rare Breeds Survival Trust

This month, the farming media in Ireland and Scotland has shown interest:

RBST launches new group to tackle threats to rare animals

EU’s endangered breeds initiative praised but UK won’t be included

And in today’s Western Morning News, they carried the latest:

Rare breeds need help if they are to survive

The UK’s native breeds of livestock and equines have brought us power, sustenance, clothing and recreation for centuries. Their relationship with not only our rural communities, but also our landscapes and natural environment, is unmatched.

However the changes to farming, transport and production over the 20th century led to a sharp decline for many of the UK’s native breeds and there were some (such as the Lincolnshire Curly Coat pig) which died out completely, never to return. Rare Breeds Survival Trust (RBST), breed societies and dedicated individuals have worked together for almost half a century to prevent any more breed extinctions and to restore rare native breeds to a more secure footing for the future.

Each year RBST’s Watchlist reports which of our native livestock and equines are rare, categorising each rare breed as ‘at risk’, or the most urgent ‘priority’ breeds. Some of the South West’s most recognisable and cherished breeds are now in this most urgent priority category.

Dartmoor ponies are small, strong and able to withstand the harsh conditions of Dartmoor. Following their decline after the Second World War, the Moorland Scheme (administered by the Duchy of Cornwall, the Dartmoor Pony Society and Dartmoor National Park) has been successful in slowly increasing the true-type Dartmoor Ponies on the moor, but numbers are still perilously low.

Western Morning News –

Their numbers are indeed very low, but Peak Hill atop Sidmouth has several enjoying the windy pastures:

Looking a little windswept | Another of the ponies on Peak Hill… | Flickr

Pinn Barton Farm Guest House on Instagram: “Dartmoor Ponies on Peak hill The ponies are back and enjoying the sun! Why not take a walk along the coastline over peak hill and see the ponies in foal!