In­side High plains stock­horse stud

Gentle­man of equine world pro­duces win­ners

Central and North Rural Weekly - - FRONT PAGE - GE­ORDI OF­FORD Ge­ordi.of­ford@ru­ral­weekly.com.au .

A YOUNG colt whose own­ers con­sid­ered geld­ing, has helped found the High­plains Aus­tralian Stock Horse stud.

When Vicki and Ge­orge Camil­leri pur­chased Tal­is­man from the Ila­long stud near Syd­ney they had no plans of go­ing into equine breed­ing.

Fast-for­ward 17 years and the stal­lion has many event ti­tles to his name and has pro­duced award-win­ning prog­eny.

The horse is a her­itage-bred stock horse, de­scribed as hav­ing a great tem­per­a­ment and a true gentle­man of the equine species.

In his younger years, Tal­is­man was show­cased in many dif­fer­ent events.

“Ge­orge won a two-handed cut­ting event on him, a friend and I also hit the show scene with him and he was suc­cess­ful in hal­ter and un­der sad­dle,” Mrs Camil­leri said.

“We’ve been horse lovers all our lives and we love the life­style and all the peo­ple we have met through breed­ing.

“He’s also a fully trained trick and lib­erty horse.”

For 15 years the Camil­leris have run their stud in Dun­dathu near Mary­bor­ough on the Fraser Coast.

“We thought of geld­ing him,” she said.

“But we had a lot of peo­ple who were in­ter­ested in him and it all just fell into place from there.”

The 24-hectare stud has fa­cil­i­ties to make mares as com­fort­able as pos­si­ble dur­ing their stay at the prop­erty.

“We’re set up pretty well for breed­ing,” she said.

“We’ve got post and rail yards, a sta­ble block and a breed­ing area which is un­der­cover with a mare crush.

“There’s also an arena for rid­ing and in­di­vid­ual pad­docks.”

At 17 years old, Tal­is­man has now re­tired from com­pe­ti­tion, but he is still pro­duc­ing award-win­ning prog­eny.

“We’re very proud of the horses by him,” she said.

“His prog­eny are prov­ing to be very ver­sa­tile.

“One of them called Sovereigns Cadet was pur­chased by the Aus­tralian Out­back Spec­tac­u­lar on the Gold Coast.

“The ac­tors would ride him and he was used as the MC’s horse. It’s quite a loud at­mos­phere and he han­dles it very well.

“Oth­ers have gone on to win cam­p­drafts, and a lot have won ti­tles at royal shows.”

She said stock­horse own­ers and breed­ers are big on her­itage ge­net­ics.

“It’s good to con­serve the her­itage of the breed,” she said.

“He car­ries the Abbey, Rivoli

Ray and Panzer her­itage work­ing blood­lines.

“Breed­ing keeps us very busy be­tween Septem­ber and Jan­uary. He’s our only stal­lion.”

She said his quite na­ture has re­mained the same right up un­til to­day.

“He’s very sweet and he’s very gen­tle with the out­side mares that come for breed­ing,” she said.

“He just has the most beau­ti­ful tem­per­a­ment.”

Mrs Camil­leri said de­pend­ing on if they have live mares to ser­vice or if they are

col­lect­ing se­men their days can be very dif­fer­ent.

“If we have live mares here they’re teased daily un­til they show signs of com­ing on heat,” she said.

“Then they are served ev­ery 48 hours un­til ovu­la­tion which is when they go off heat.

“If we’ve had se­men or­dered we use a teaser mare and we col­lect it, then we process and ex­tend it here.

“From there it’s taken to Her­vey Bay vet surgery and they re­port on it and ship it.”

At 17 years old the stal­lion is still pro­duc­ing award win­ning prog­eny in mul­ti­ple dis­ci­plines.

De­spite his age, Mrs Camil­leri said he’s in top con­di­tion.

“We hope there’s still a few more years in him,” Mrs Camil­leri said.

“We’ve been very lucky with Tal­is­man, he’s a very easy horse to have around.

“Once he is gone we’ll prob­a­bly tone things down a bit and just en­joy the young­sters to go on and keep show­ing his kids and grand-prog­eny.”

PHO­TOS: CON­TRIB­UTED

PRIZE WIN­NER: Ge­orge Camil­leri won a two-handed cut­ting event rid­ing Tal­is­man, just one of many ti­tles won by the stal­lion.

Prog­eny of Ila­long Tal­is­man, High­plains Com­padre.

Tal­is­man is also a trained trick and lib­erty horse.

PHO­TOS: CON­TRIB­UTED

THE STUD: Breed­ing sea­son keeps the Camil­leri’s busy be­tween Septem­ber and Jan­uary, they also of­fer se­men from the stal­lion.

Vicki and High­plains Dartag­nan 2016 EMB ASHS Year­ling Fu­tu­rity Win­ners, Kil­coy Queens­land.

Tal­is­man prog­eny High­plains Jas­min with Lil­lie Camil­leri.

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