Decoder. All wild horses/ burros are identified by a freezemark. I have noticed that this method of identification is quite ambiguous compared to what I believe could be a more useful methodology. There is too much room for mistaken identity, say if two horses happened to have the same markings on paper, but in reality have very specific individual physical characteristics. This could lead to major problems from mistaken healthcare to going so far as to an adopter getting the wrong animal.
“Well, what about tags?” You may be asking. Tags are unreliable because they can be switched, fall off, be misread, etc. Too many mistakes.
The identification key should not be so limited. Whorls can and do often occur not only on the face but also on the chest, flanks, legs, and belly. There should be notes about the presence of chestnuts, coronet band markings, as well as sole marks. There is also a limitation on potential leg markings such as marks on the heel or under the heel as well as scars, which could be a very important marking. Let’s consider the equine passport, which is required for horses that travel internationally for competition or any other reason. Every single marking on the horse must be documented, as well as a microchip number for the equine.
Here is the problem though: the rules should be the same across the board. If something is expected to be documented in the USDA, then it should be documented by the FAA and the BLM. There should be a very clear paper trail regardless of who, what, when, where, or why. It isn’t that hard, it would literally be a couple more signatures to add to the pile. Nothing extreme.
I’m also going to mention that accuracy of information is also painfully important. And I have noted first hand, on the adoption page of the BLM, that something as simple as color is recorded improperly. Which makes me doubt every scrap of information that is disclosed about an animal, like if you cannot accurately state the coloring of an animal, how on this good earth am I supposed to trust that you know the age, height, and other various details about this animal? I can’t. And I shouldn’t have to say that that is a huge problem.
Facial markings are like a battle of who can cause the biggest headache. Accepted names for facial markings of equines are: Star, snip, stripe, blaze, and bald.
I can assure you, that the government is just trying to make thing as confusing and conflicting as possible, potentially without even realizing that that is what they are doing. *Sigh*. There is no such thing as a frosted facial marking. Just letting all know…
Coloring. Chestnut and Sorrel are the same thing, they are just references between Western and English horsemen/horsewomen. So you guys really don’t need two different letters for them, it ought to just be Chestnut/Sorrel- E. Strawberry Roan and Red Roan: the same thing. Strawberry/ Red Roan -I. And I really should take the time to mention that there is no such thing as a “white” horse. All “white” horses are actually a light grey; I say this because if you see a light grey adult as a foal, odds are that it is actually quite dark. They lighten with age. This is proven in Lipizzaner’s.
Alrighty, I believe that I have covered everything that I can think of in this moment about the Freezemark Interpretation. Thank you so much for reading this post. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to me via the Contact page. Thank you and have a blessed day 🙂