Photos and informations about the rare Pónei da Terceira breed, Forgotten Horses a photographic project about endangered equines by The Pixel Nomad

Pónei da Terceira

Risk Level: at risk
Local Risk Level: critical
Listed by DAD-IS
Mountain horse breed from Portugal

Informations about the rare Pónei da Terceira

The Pónei da Terceira, also known as the Azores Pony, recognized on January 27, 2014, is the fourth native equine breed of Portugal. These small-sized animals are well-proportioned and balanced, resembling a miniature version of the purebred Lusitano.

Origin and history of the Pónei da Terceira

Originating from the Azores, specifically the island of Terceira, the Pónei da Terceira has evolved over generations in response to the challenging environment of the archipelago. Tracing the history of the Pónei da Terceira is challenging due to the scarcity of written records. Molecular analyses have shown that its closest genetic relatives are not only breeds from the Iberian Peninsula but also South American breeds like the Paso Fino from Puerto Rico and the Criollo from Venezuela. This suggests that the breed descends from animals brought to the archipelago during the age of discovery, continuously selected by the inhabitants of Terceira for their smaller size. The breed’s development was shaped by the isolation of the islands and the need for resilient horses capable of navigating diverse terrains.

Character and features of the Pónei da Terceira

The Pónei da Terceira is characterized by its compact size, standing typically between 120 to 145 cm at the withers. The Pónei da Terceira is known for being fast, intelligent, courageous, resilient, rustic, and extremely docile. They are easy to handle, with a natural aptitude for traction and jumping, making them versatile and capable.

Utilisation of the rare Pónei da Terceira

Traditionally, these ponies were used for transportation and agricultural tasks on Terceira Island. Their roles have evolved, and today they are primarily used in equestrian sports and youth rider training, showcasing their adaptability and performance in dressage and show jumping, among other activities.

Current situation of the rare and endangered Pónei da Terceira

As of 2019, the breed’s genealogical book recorded 36 males and 53 females in pure lines across 16 breeders. Efforts to conserve and maintain the breed’s genetic purity, initiated by Prof. Artur da Câmara Machado, have led to a sustainable new role in equestrian sports and education.

Native country

Portugal, Azores Islands


local, Azores Islands

Risk Level

Critical: ca. 120


120-145 cm

Coat colour

Bay, black, chestnut, grey



Forgotten horse

Rare and endangered

Free Horse

elevate extensif; free roaming in the mountains

Other names of the Pónei da Terceira horse

Azores Pony — Terceira Pony

Explore my Pónei da Terceira Photos

Pónei da Terceira

All my pictures of rare and endangered horses can be licensed for private, editorial and commercial usage, and ordered as Fine Art Print as well. In addition, the albums only show a part of my large archive. Contact me directly if you don’t find what you are looking for.

Where to find the rare Pónei da Terceira

Here are some places where you can see where you can support the rare and endangered breed. Above all I want to thank everybody who works with me.

Forgotten Horses Group on Facebook

This group is part of the Forgotten Horses project and aims to raise awareness of endangered horse breeds and therefore to contribute to the preservation of the diversity of horse breeds, further free living and wild horses.
The group provides information and facilitates international exchange on rare and endangered horse breeds.
Take part in my project

Pónei da Terceira Photoshooting

Take part in my projects Forgotten Horses and Free Horses and consequently make an impact that matters. By photographing rare and endangered horses we can raise awareness to disappearing horse breeds and therefore preserve equine diversity.

photo archive

Professional photography of Pónei da Terceira

Are you looking for professional photos of rare and endangered horse breeds? You will find a small selection of my pictures in the breed posts, however you may ask for more specific photos directly. In short, all my pictures can be licensed for private, editorial and commercial usage.


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