Home / Spanish Horses / Retuerta Horse

By Maurice Gainsbourg

Last updated: 12th May 2016

Retuerta Horse


Maurice Gainsbourg
Last updated: 12th May 2016

The Retuerta horse is a rare equine breed indigenous to Spain (Andalusia region). Living in isolation from other horses for a long time has made it emerge as one of the popular feral breeds.

Retuerta Horse Pictures

Quick Information

Other Names  Caballo de las Retuertas de Doñana, Caballo de las Retuertas
Temperament Robust stature but not versatile and hard to train
Physical Characteristics Coarse looking with a sturdy built
Colors Grey, Dark Bay
Common Use General riding
Height About 16 hands
Health No breed-related health problems though proper veterinary checkup is essential for a sound health
Popular Traits Was considered to be ugly and ungainly
Feeding/Diet Hay and Grass
Country of Origin Spain
Year/ Time of Development 3000 years ago


These endangered breeds are said to bear close resemblance to the Iberian horses that were found in Spain before being domesticated. They obtained their name from the Retuertas that were said to be the flooded regions located in the Donana National Park, where the water drains slowly to the salty marshes. CSIC, in its genetic studies, reveal that these horses were one of the oldest equine breeds of Europe existing around 3000 years BP. Though initially used for agricultural purposes, they were replaced by other breeds who were more productive than them, leading to the gradual extinction of these horses. In fact, by the 1980s, only about sixty of them were left. They are presently found in the Donana National Park, in the Huelva and Sevilla provinces of Spain. They also reside in “Campanarios de Azaba”, located in Espeja. In fact, by 2012 only 150 of them were left in Donana, increasing their risks of being wiped out completely by any calamity or disaster. Thus, wildlife experts made arrangement for bringing in about 120 such horses to the “Campanarios de Azaba” reserve.

Interesting Facts

  • Marismeno (Pura Raza Espanola) was crossed with the native Retuertas and is found in farms as well as homes of the Southern Spain.

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