Domestic Animal Diversity Information System (DAD-IS)

Tarpan vs konik polski

The wild ancestors of the konik polski were tarpans. They inhabited the forested areas of eastern Poland. In the wild, the tarpans survived until 1780, around the Bialowieza Forest. At the beginning of the 19th century, the last tarpans were caught and transferred to the estate of Zamojski counts (Lubelskie province), and then distributed to local peasants. The first attempts to run an organized breeding of konik polski were undertaken in Poland by Prof. Tadeusz Vetulani in 1923. Thanks to his efforts, in 1936, a horse with typical tarpan characteristics was introduced into the Bialowieza Forest and assigned a protected status.

Actually, konik polski horses are found throughout the country, but the largest number of herds is in the northeast and the region of Wielkopolska.