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Researchers find feral horses in Theodore Roosevelt of mixed ancestry, with herd now inbred

Feral horses living in Theodore Roosevelt National Park in the Badlands of North Dakota likely had multiple origins, but have since become inbred, according to Igor Ovchinnikov of the University of North Dakota, and colleagues, in a study published August 1 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE.

While the origins of the horse herd at Theodore Roosevelt National Park are uncertain, historians suspect that the original group was a mix of horses from Native American horse traders and free-range horses maintained on the Badlands for ranching. To determine whether these origin assumptions were correct, in the current study, researchers collected hair samples from 196 horses in the park and looked at two types of genetic markers that can indicate where the horses came from.

Read more at: https://phys.org/news/2018-08-wild-horses-theodore-roosevelt-national.html#jCp

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