East Lansing, Mich. - 1/11/08 - The state's equine population has grown by 23,000 animals since 1996, according to the initial findings of a new study conducted by researchers from Michigan State University, the Michigan Horse Council and the National Agriculture Statistics Service.
Designed to assess the equine population by breed and use, the report also examined how horses are maintained, the expanse of the equine industry through employment numbers and the handling methods of land issues including zoning and manure management. The first comprehensive study of the state's equine population - including horses, donkeys and mules - in more than a decade, report findings revealed the population has climbed nearly 20 percent since its last assessment.
"It's the most comprehensive study of this kind that's been completed," says Mary Rossano, Michigan Horse Council industry liaison and survey co-investigator. "We included questions about how horses are used, how manure is managed and how horses are used on public land. Now we have three studies in a row, all sampled by the same protocol, from which we can make valid comparisons."