The Dulmen was found near the town of Dülmen, in the Merfelder Bruch area where ponies have been documented since the early 1300s. It is believed that the Dulmen developed for primitive types, as it still has some primitive characteristics. The ponies lived in wild herds across Westphalia until the 19th century, when land was divided and separated and the ponies began to lose their habitat. There is only one wild herd left today, owned by the Duke of Croy, that roams 860 acres (3.5 km²) of the Meerfelder Bruch. The Dukes of Croy first helped the herd in the mid-1800s. The ponies are left to find food and shelter, must cope with illness and death. Therefore, only the strongest in the herd survive, promoting the toughness of the breed, and making them resistant to disease. Once a year, on the last Saturday of May, the ponies are rounded off and the colts separated. The colts are sold at a public auction, and the mares are returned with only one or two stallions.
The Dulmen is the only native pony breed in Germany, now that the Senner pony of the Teutoburg Forest is extinct.
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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Dulmen Pony".