27 November, 2011

Oreana CF

"She's..a..Dav..en..port?" I asked incredulously, my mind stuttering on the words, as I realized that I had been completely wrong and she was not the Babson Halima mare that I had believed her to be.

Oreana CF is a Plantagenet daughter out of Oriole, a Sir daughter out of Ceres, who is an Aramis daughter out of Dharebah. Both Plantagenet and Oriole are out of the same mare, Ceres, making them half-siblings. But actually they are more closely related than half-siblings, as Prince Hal (the sire of Akmet Haffez, Plantagenet's sire) and Sir (Oriole's sire) are full brothers, while Portia (the dam of Iras) and Aramis (the sire of Ceres) are full siblings, both by Tripoli and out of Dhalana. The concentration of a very small group of horses in Oreana's pedigree is stupefying and for me, underscores the skill and wisdom of her breeder. Oreana was born in 1984, bred by Charles Craver, who single-handedly rescued  the Davenport horses from extinction. Oreana is not a straight Egyptian horse, she is a Davenport Arabian and by virtue of the second generation Kuhaylan Haifi horses who appear in her pedigree: Dharebah, Dhalana, and El Alamein, she is recognized as Core Haifi.

Oreana is extraordinary, very beautiful, with the classic shorter, wider head, so desired by Arabian horse enthusiasts. Her eyes are so black, large and round, projecting a positive energy of kindness. They are set on the side of the head, with a broad area in between. Her muzzle is dark and fine, with exquisite nostrils, larger-sized but delicately shaped.  Her pigmentation, as a gray colored horse is fantastic. However, it's the prominent bone in her face that really gets to me. Look under her left eye and notice how wide the bone is, how much the bone juts out from her face. Her jowls are large, like dinner plates and you know, from looking at the picture that a man's fist can fit comfortably in the area between the jowl bones. Even though we can't see the rest of her, you just know that she is gracefully substantial, smooth of body, close-coupled, her body comprised of rounded flowing lines. There is luster to her coat that is so striking, it is easy to see. I notice this quality in the Davenports. Their coat has a sheen, a luminescence that other bloodlines just don't have. I have always wondered about this special quality and why only the Davenports and the Bahraini horses consistently share this coat quality.

In the Al Khamsa roster, she is credited with producing only 3 foals. A mare by Javera Thadrian named Arietta CF and two sons: Tesio CF by Atticus and Tribute CF by Telemachus. Both stallions have sired get and Tesio even has grand get credited to him.

While it is important to protect the integrity of the Davenport breeding group, as it is also to preserve any of the many wonderful breeding groups within Al Khamsa, I long for the day when breeders will become more courageous and utilize all of the Asil bloodlines in combination, without the fear of losing an advantage by forgetting all about a straight label, in favor of producing a more well-rounded, diverse and authentic Arabian horse. There is more freedom, when you learn to color outside of the lines.


1 comment:

Unknown said...

Thank you, Ralph! She was a lovely mare, and died way too soon.... colic. Tribute was unfortunately gelded, and her daughter Arietta was just as lovely, a real loss. Tesio has a wonderful home, but there is not a lot of breeding going on right now.

That just goes to show you that you can try really hard, and prize something very much, and it can still slip through your fingers.

I hope the line continues! Jeanne Craver