The pottok, pronounced 'pot-ee-ok' (Basque: pottoka, "little horse"), is a pony native to the Pyrenees of the Basque Country in France and Spain. Basque ( native name: euskara) is the Language spoken by the Basque people who inhabit the Pyrenees in North-Central Spain A pony is a small Horse with a specific conformation and temperament The Pyrenees (Pirineos French: Pyrénées; Catalan: Pirineus; Occitan: Pirenèus; Aragonese: Perinés This article is about the country For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic France topics. Spain () or the Kingdom of Spain (Reino de España is a country located mostly in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula.
The pottok's origins may lie as far back as 10,000 years ago. Ancient cave paintings in the area show pottok-like horses. They are thought to descend from the Magdalenian horses of 14,000 - 7,000 BC. The Magdalenian, also spelled Magdalénien refers to one of the later cultures of the Upper Palaeolithic in Western Europe. There are now only a few hundred left and all have owners, rather than freely wandering through the mountains. The pottok has a black or bay brown coat, about 1. 25m tall to its withers, with a large head, small ears, short neck, long back and shaggy mane. Wither redirects here For the comic character see Wither (comics. It has small but sturdy hooves for mountain walking. Their adaptation to mountain life and dark colour made them ideal for use by smugglers. They were also used in mining work across France in the 19th and 20th centuries.
Pottok numbers have been severely reduced by habitat loss and crossbreeding. In the 20th century, piebald pottoks were bred, particularly for circus use. The twentieth century of the Common Era began on A piebald is an animal especially a Horse, that has a spotting pattern of large white and black patches A circus is most commonly a traveling company of performers that may include acrobats, Clowns trained animals trapeze acts Hoopers, tightrope walkers Stockier ponies for agricultural work were bred by cross-breeding with draught horses, also often with a large variety of coat colours. They have also been bred with Iberian horses following guidelines of pony clubs. The Iberian horse is a title given to a number of horse breeds native to the Iberian peninsula. This cross-breeding has left perhaps no more than 150 pure-bred mares in the French Basque Country. A reserve in Bidarray, Basse-Navarre has been started to protect the pony and its environment. Bidarray (Bidarrai is a small village and commune in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques département of southwestern France. Lower Navarre (Nafarroa Beherea or Baxenabarre Basse-Navarre Baja Navarra is a part of the present day Pyrénées Atlantiques département There is much debate about how to increase numbers - whether to focus only on the pure-bred pottoks or to employ selective inter-breeding to build greater numbers of pottok-like ponies.
There are pottok fairs held in Espelette, Labourd in November and January. Espelette (Ezpeleta is a commune and village in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques département (64 Aquitaine, in south west France Labourd ( Lapurdi in Basque; from Latin Lapurdum, Labord in Gascon is a former French province and part of the Pottoks featured in the 1935 film Ramuntcho by Réné Barbéris with Louis Jouvet. Year 1935 ( MCMXXXV) was a Common year starting on Tuesday (link will display full calendar of the Gregorian calendar. Ramuntcho (1897 is a novel by French author Pierre Loti. It is a story about contraband runners in the Basque province of France Louis Jouvet ( December 24, 1887 - August 16, 1951) was a renowned French actor and producer Bayonne's rugby club, Aviron Bayonnais has 'pottoka' as its official mascot. Bayonne ( French: Bayonne bajɔn Gascon Occitan and Basque: Baiona) is a city and commune of southwest For the French Football (soccer club see Aviron Bayonnais Football Club.
The Basque name of the Smurfs is pottokiak, probably for the connotations of smallness. The Smurfs ( Les Schtroumpfs) are a fictional group of small Sky blue creatures who live in Smurf Village somewhere in the woods