Heavy metal status of Polish Konik horses from stable-pasture and outdoor maintenance systems in the masurian environment
Wydanie: 4 / 2011
Among domestic animals, cattle and horses kept on pasture and fed with hay and straw are exposed most prominently to environmental pollution. Determination of the sta- tus of heavy metals in bodies of horses is important for two reasons. Firstly, it helps to assess the level of environmental contamination. Secondly, heavy metals can have consi- derable influence on animals living outdoors. The aim of the study has been to verify whether the level of Cr, Mn, Cu, Cd, Pb and Ni in the coat hair and cornified structures of hooves may differ between horses maintained alternately in a stable and on pasture and living outdoors all year long, with Polish Koniks from Mazury (the Masurian Lake District) taken as an example. Possible effects of the feeding season and age of horses were considered. ln total, 35 Polish Konik horses were examined, either kept in a stable-pasture system in Popielno or outdoors in Wojnowo. Sixty-two samples of summer and winter coat hair, 28 samples of hoof horn, as well as 10 samples of pasture plants and water were analyzed. The data were elaborated with the use multi-factor analysis of variance, T-Tukey-Kramer test and Pearson's correlation. The results show that Polish Konik horses bred in Mazury have a low heavy metal concentration in the coat hair and hoof horn. The stablepasture and outdoor maintenance systems hardly differentiate the element content, whereas the winter feeding results in an elevated concentration of the elements in the hair. Yearlings show higher Mn and Cd content than mares and foals at foot. The dam's impact on the heavy metal concentration in the hair and hoof horn in their foals is usually non-significant.
Stachurska A., Wałkuska G., Cebera M., Jaworski Z., Chałabis-Mazurek A. 2011. Heavy metal status of polish Konik Horses from stable-pasture and outdoor maintenance systems in the masurian environment. J. Elem. 16(4): 623-633, DOI - 10.5601/jelem.2011.16.4.11.
Słowa kluczowe:horse, Polish Konik, heavy metal, coat hair, hoof horn